In their ARGUMENTS the lawyers representing the teachers have failed to reference the following critical line of thought and cases:
Washington v. Harper, 494 U.S. 210, 229 (1990) we find “The forcible injection of medication into a nonconsenting person’s body represents a substantial interference with that person’s liberty."
Also see Rivers v. Katz (67 N.Y.2d 485) 1986 in which the Court stated:
”In Storar, we recognized that a patient’s right to determine the course of his medical treatment was paramount to what might otherwise be the doctor’s obligation to provide medical care, and that the right of a competent adult to refuse medical treatment must be honored, even though the recommended treatment may be beneficial or even necessary to preserve the patient’s life. This fundamental common-law right is coextensive with the patient’s liberty interest protected by the due process clause of our State Constitution.
In our system of a free government, where notions of individual autonomy and free choice are cherished, it is the individual who must have the final say in respect to decisions regarding his medical treatment in order to insure that the greatest possible protection is accorded his autonomy and freedom from unwanted interference with the furtherance of his own…”
And when a person’s liberty is infringed upon by government we find:
A government imposed act which “impinges upon a fundamental right explicitly or implicitly secured by the Constitution is presumptively unconstitutional.” See: Harris v. McRae United States Supreme Court (1980) Also see City of Mobile v. Bolden, 466 U.S. 55, 76, 100 S.Ct. 1490, 64 L.Ed.2d 47 (1980)
Nor did the lawyers cite “The mere chilling of a Constitutional right by a penalty on its exercise is patently unconstitutional.” Shapiro v. Thompson, 394 U.S. 618
And, finally, the lawyers representing the teachers have not used Jacobson v. Massachusetts, to their advantage and to substantiate the NYC mandate is overkill and not the least restrictive means to accomplish its alleged objective, which is required under “strict scrutiny”.
The court, in the Jacobson Case, stated in crystal clear language:
“If a person should deem it important that vaccination should not be performed in his case, and the authorities should think otherwise, it is not in their power to vaccinate him by force, and the worst that could happen to him under the statute would be the payment of the penalty of $5.”
In today’s dollars, that would be about a $150.00 fine, and nothing near the loss of one’s income as a NYC teacher which is the penalty imposed upon NYC teachers, but not on other city workers!
A one-size-fits-all COVID vaccine mandate which is not “narrowly tailored” to achieve the government’s purpose __ a purpose which in this case must be clearly defined and be based upon scientific and logical reasoning ___ and does not use the “least restrictive means” to achieve the purpose, fails under strict scrutiny, e.g. see: Judge blocks Western Michigan’s vaccine mandate for athletes (religionnews.com)
In closing, and as a former New Yorker, I believe New York City voters deserve to be flushed down the sewer as they are and for electing and reelecting the despots they do. But I do have enormous compassion when people are deprived of their constitutionally guaranteed rights . . . even nitwitted teachers who have used their job to indoctrinate their students rather than educate them in the 3 Rs , and teach them to love their country. In the end, even NYC teachers deserve the protection afforded under strict scrutiny.
" I believe that there are more instances of the abridgement of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachment of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations." ___ Madison Elliot`s Debates, vol. III, page 87