After being persecuted by the University of Chicago for months, unvaccinated student-athlete and Chicago Thinker staff writer Arthur Long joined Laura Ingraham’s show on Thursday to fight back.
As he detailed in a recent op-ed for the Thinker, UChicago health officials have persecuted and harassed Long ever since he received a medical exemption from the university’s COVID vaccine requirement last summer.
UChicago’s persecution of Long began in August 2021 when he moved into a campus dorm for football conditioning. Early one morning, Long says three housing officials banged on his door, reprimanding him for sleeping in an “unauthorized bed.” According to Long, the ambushers insisted he move to a single room because he was unvaccinated, despite undergoing the weekly COVID testing required for unvaccinated students. A teammate happened to be nearby and allegedly heard the officials laugh and exclaim “We’re gonna get that unvaxxed kid! He’s here.”
On air, Long explained that “This was the first of three shocking events that happened to me at the university.”
During autumn-quarter midterms, Long received an unsigned email from UChicago Student Wellness informing him that he was being banned from all university buildings, including the dorm where he was living. He was later contacted a third time—this time during finals week—by the Director of Student Wellness, who said he was not in compliance with the vaccine mandate.
“He cited a bunch of anonymous experts and no facts and tried to override the advice of my own personal physician,” Long said. UChicago revoked Long’s vaccine exemption without explanation, suddenly calling his original exemption “temporary.”
Ingraham described Long’s experiences as “Orwellian.” As UChicago is known for its intellectual freedom, rigorous debate, and open inquiry, Long acknowledged that “this is a fight that’s going on across America, and it’s sad that it has come to UChicago.”
Instead of complying with UChicago’s vaccine mandates, which now include a booster requirement to be fulfilled by January 24, Long is following his physician’s recommendation that he eschew the injections. “I am not going to be coerced by a bunch of anonymous bureaucrats and so-called ‘experts’ who think they can make my own personal health decisions for me,” Long stated.
Arthur disclosed that many of his teammates have nonetheless admitted to being coerced into getting the jab by the university’s “authoritarian measures […] they did not want to take it.”
“This is why it’s important for us to all stand up as students and tell the university that this is not going to stand,” Long emphasized.
Jaelyn Douglas is the Chicago Thinker's Chief Communications Officer, in addition to being a Staff Writer. As a second-year at the University of Chicago, she plans to major in Public Policy and attend law school. Outside of the classroom, she enjoys working as a law clerk, boating, hiking, camping, hunting, playing guitar, and spending time with her family on their farm.