This week, the governor issued an executive order that state agencies may not mandate any vaccine for Alabama citizens or aid in processing federal fines and other punishments associated with a mandate.  The agencies covered under the executive order include all state colleges and universities.

The language in the executive order was squishy at best; nonetheless, it must have hit a nerve at Sanford Hall, Auburn University’s administrative office.

Weeks ago, the attorney general issued a cease-and-desist order which effectively shut down the University of Alabama-Birmingham’s effort to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine for their employees.  UAB complied.

Not so with Auburn.  After the governor’s executive order was issued, the Auburn administration said the order will not affect their plans to require proof of vaccination from their employees by December 8th.

In essence, they told the governor and the attorney general to shove it.

It appears the Auburn administration is willing to acquiesce to Biden’s unconstitutional vaccine mandate and ignore every tenet of American liberty which was paid for with American blood.

Meanwhile, this weekend, Ole Miss is coming to Auburn.  The university president will take his seat, along with his select friends in the President’s Suite at Jordan Hare Stadium. 

He and his friends will gaze down from their Presidential Box at 87,000 screaming fans, shoulder to shoulder, hugging each other when Auburn scores a touchdown, and yelling 12 inches away from other’s faces without a thought of COVID.

The president and his friends will be served their hot dogs, cokes, and maybe a glass of wine as they cheer for the Tigers.  When the day is done, he will retire to the president’s mansion.

But on December 8th, by his order, thousands of Auburn’s workers, many of whom probably served him those hot dogs, or cleaned up the stadium after the game, or who cut the grass at the president’s mansion, will be fired if they don’t take the vaccine for a so-called pandemic that is ignored during weekend football games.

They may not have thought this through, but the Auburn administration is boldly stating that in the name of keeping their federal money intact, they are willing to defy the governor and attorney general and fire thousands of Alabama citizens, driving them into bankruptcy or poverty.

This attitude is why rage is building toward those who sit in the ivory palaces of higher education where not one has been elected to anything by anybody.

Auburn should remember they are also funded by hundreds of millions of state dollars every year, compliments of the taxpayers of Alabama.  They also need to remember the governor is the president of the board of trustees, and she should not tolerate Auburn’s disrespect.  She should convene a meeting of the trustees and demand the administration comply with the leaders of Alabama, or else.

Our attorney general is already fighting the Biden Administration.  Our governor, legislators, and even university presidents must unite in passing a state law forbidding a vaccine mandate.  Codified law passed by the legislature and signed by the governor will strengthen the attorney general’s case in federal court.

The Auburn administration may think this is about saving their federal money.

In reality, it's about freedom, liberty, and standing against tyranny.

We should all take a deep breath and hear the words of our founding father Samuel Adams:

If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were once our countrymen.”

Tim James, of Opelika, is a businessman and former candidate for governor. The son of former Governor Fob James, Tim played fullback at Auburn, 1981 & 1982 seasons. He is substituting for Matt Murphy, whose regular column will appear next week. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to