Merriam-Webster Defines Anti-Vaxxer as Someone Who ‘Opposes Laws that Mandate Vaccination’

BOSTON, MA - AUGUST 30: Anti-vaccine activists hold signs in front of the Massachusetts State House during a protest against Governor Charlie Baker's mandate that all Massachusetts school students enrolled in child care, pre-school, K-12, and post-secondary institutions must receive the flu vaccine this year on August 30, 2020 in …
Scott Eisen/Getty Images

The Merriam-Webster dictionary has seemingly expanded the traditional definition of “anti-vaxxer,” describing it as, in part, someone who “opposes laws that mandate vaccination.”

As of the publication of this post, Merriam-Webster’s definition of “anti-vaxxer” reads, “a person who opposes vaccination or laws that mandate vaccination.”

Merriam-Webster screenshot

Under that definition, many people who are pro-vaccine — and even vaccinated themselves — could be considered an “anti-vaxxer” if they disagree with President Biden’s attempts to force businesses to implement coronavirus vaccine requirements.

A July Convention of States Action/Trafalgar Group survey asked respondents, “Do you believe taking COVID vaccines should be mandatory, or should taking the vaccine be a personal choice?” The overwhelming majority, 71.4 percent, said vaccines should be a “personal choice” — not mandated. It is likely these individuals would also oppose laws mandating the vaccine. Per Merriam-Webster’s definition, that would make them all anti-vaxxers, even if they personally chose to get the shot themselves.

President Biden has tasked the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to develop a rule to force businesses with 100 employees or more to mandate coronavirus vaccines or implement testing requirements. Roughly three weeks after Biden’s announcement, it has yet to release the rule, and the Biden administration is not providing a timeline on when it will come.

Biden’s initial announcement sparked outrage, triggering 24 Republican attorneys general to warn Biden to reverse course, threatening to take legal action if it comes to fruition. However, by Merriam-Webster’s apparent definition, that would seem to make all 24 attorneys general anti-vaxxers.

This is hardly the first time Merriam-Webster has embraced politically expedient definitions bowing to the far-left. Last year, it appeared to update its definition of “female” to include “having a gender identity that is opposite of male.” It also updated the definition of “racism” to include “the systemic oppression” of certain groups of people.

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