Steven Peguero

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Boston, I'm breaking up with you


After several years of continuous annoyances and governmental overreach, I have lost patience, in totality, with the Boston metropolitan area. I have had enough of the puritanical and paternalistic culture and politics, as well as this sense of collective hypochondria, that continues to intensify within the area.

The final straw? The City of Boston will begin enforcing a vaccine passport mandate on January 15th, 2022, which will require you to reveal personal immunization records to indulge in clam chowder and jog on a treadmill. Surrounding towns have pledged to enact a similar mandate in response to Boston's politically brazen move. Travel passports, border checkpoints, the TSA and Real ID weren't invasive enough, apparently.

On principle, I am for the freedom of movement and bodily autonomy. This is based on a personal belief that people own themselves. As such, I think that people have an inherent right to make their own medical choices, regardless of the will of others. Determining such a choice should be only between you and a doctor.

Thus, in response, I am voting with my feet and wallet. I will begin refusing to patronize shops, restaurants and venues within Boston and any other town that entertains vaccine passports. Until these vaccine passport mandates are rescinded and the general COVID-19 hysteria among the local populace comes to an end, I will continue this personal boycott and spend my money in places that are more emotionally grounded and have basic respect for human and economic liberties.

However, I didn't come to this decision lightly. It breaks my heart to have to do this, as there are many struggling small businesses around Boston, some that I consider to be cultural institutions, that I've been proudly patronizing within the last fifteen years. But, on principle and for the purpose of sending a message, I will not be able to patronize them for the foreseeable future. With sincere love and empathy for these establishments, I hope they'll never have to permanently shut their doors as a result of, ultimately, these objectively shitty laws deriving from their seemingly overzealous, disconnected mayors, city council and board of health members. This area has already been experiencing many commercial vacancies as a result of the rising cost of real estate within the last several years alone.

But, to conclude this post, do you know what's funny? I am a COVID-19 vaccine recipient. Yes, I am actually vaccinated against COVID-19, but I am also against the idea of governmental mandates, especially those that I believe are solely intended to spite political dissenters.

Boston, Cambridge, Somerville and other surrounding towns in the area currently entertaining vaccine passports, I am breaking my silence to say: You've gone too far this time and, as a result, will not be seeing a single cent from me until this overreaching hysteria comes to a halt. Until then, in an effort to resume my pursuit of happiness, I will be moving on from this pandemic without you.