The right-wing Washington Times gushed Monday about Southwest Airlines pilots it credits with patriotism for refusing to fly as a protest over vaccine mandates.
Under the headline, "Pilots are patriots for fighting COVID-19 vaccines," a commentary in the Times extolled the virtue of combatting the most effective tool for slowing the once-in-a-century pandemic.
"Just a few days ago, the Southwest Airlines Pilot Associations, representing 10,000 pilots, filed a lawsuit requesting a temporary halt on the company's intentions to mandate COVID-19 vaccinations for all employees," it states.
"Coincidentally enough, 'weather' over the weekend caused the cancellation of the 1,800 Southwest flights. But here's the funny part: 'Weather' only caused the weekend cancellation of 63 of American Airlines' flights, and 32% of Spirit Airlines' flights, Forbes found. Yes. Weather. Wink, wink."
The Southwest Airlines Pilot Association stated Sunday, "We can say with confidence that our Pilots are not participating in any official or unofficial job actions."
Here's how the Times commentary described pilots' alleged anger over a decision by Southwest Airlines that had nothing to do with the federal government:
"They're fighting the mandates, just the same. And that's a fight all of America needs to support. It's about individual choice, over government force — about individualism over collectivism. Is this still America?"
"The vaccine mandate is the fork in the road for America: Go left, and it's the path to communism and collectivism and total top-down bureaucratic control. Go right, and the authoritarian leftists go back in their box, are shoved back in their corners, are pushed back in their proper subservient-to-the-people places.
The left doesn't simply want power.
"The left — the Democrats, the socialists and communists in the Democratic Party, the collectivists at the United Nations and World Economic Forum and other global forces, the elites in Big Business and Big Tech — these leftists ultimately want worship.
"They don't believe in God. They think they are gods. They think you should believe that, too. And those who dissent? Those who question? Those who continue to resist?"
Alrighty then. Funny thing, though: The Times certainly has changed its tune about the very same vaccines from when it liked the guy who was president.
On January 18, two days before the inauguration of President Joe Biden (the legitimacy of which it didn't question), the Washington Times praised Donald Trump on the subject: "Even as the COVID-19 pandemic devastated the economy and contributed heavily to his failed reelection bid, Mr. Trump marshaled an unprecedented effort to produce vaccines in less than a year."
A month earlier, on December 8, there were two stories in which the Times was even more effusive about the vaccine.
One was headlined "Trump taunts doubters, citing speed of vaccine." That one even alluded to -- without objection -- the heavy-handed notion of the federal government requiring companies to produce vaccines:
"President Trump declared victory over naysayers Tuesday, saying he sped multiple COVID-19 vaccines through the pipeline in a single year, while nudging the Food and Drug Administration to approve Pfizer's version this week," the Times reported. ""Gotta get it moving. Hopefully that will go very quickly.
"The president said he is willing to invoke the Defense Production Act to procure additional doses of vaccine, if needed, as the administration denies reports it waved off chances to get more doses of Pfizer's shots." It added that Trump didn't believe that was necessary.
In the other story that day, the Times reported:
"President Trump took a victory lap at his White House vaccine summit Tuesday, but the man of the hour is a Food and Drug Administration official few Americans know about. "Dr. Peter Marks," President Trump said in a roll call of his Operation Warp Speed roster. "Thank you."
"The White House pulled Dr. Marks into the summit Tuesday to build confidence in Operation Warp Speed, the initiative that developed vaccines at a record pace and gave Mr. Trump a win during a critical stretch of the pandemic."
It's hard to believe that it's just 10 months ago that the Washington Times strangely embraced the vaccine it now holds up as a symbol of tyranny--even when business and not government requires it of employees. Here's what it said about the federal government and vaccines back then:
"U.S. officials say they need at least 70% of the population to take the vaccine to develop the type of herd immunity that will get transmission of the virus to manageable levels next year.
"Army Gen. Gustave Perna, who is guiding logistics for the White House, said he will tell his mother and sons to take the vaccine once it is available, as Operation Warp Speed tries to break through hesitancy across the nation.
"We can do this," he said, "if we do it together."