Vivek Murthy, the U.S. surgeon general, has issued a warning headlined “Our Epidemic of Loneliness and Isolation.” Isolation from others is a huge public health risk, the report cautions. There are “pillars” of action presented in the 81-page paper that is government-directed and aim to combat the health risks associated with social isolation.
A new study found that being lonely raises mortality risks by almost 30%. Heart disease and stroke are also more common in those with few positive social interactions.
These mandates may seem harmless at first glance, but they pose a serious threat to our personal freedom and the security of our relationships. It’s not an exaggeration to suggest that the project has the potential to be so large in scale that it poses a danger to limiting our liberty of assembly in ways we haven’t even thought of yet.
The first is “strengthen social infrastructure in local communities.” It defines social infrastructure as community activities and institutions and states that the government should support and organize local groups, including their locations.
The second pillar states the government has a responsibility to track and reduce the public’s health harm resulting from regulations, goods, and amenities which promote social disconnection. It needs cross-departmental leadership to create and manage a social connection strategy. Any such approach must include diversity, equality, and inclusion [DEI].
A further intrusion into people’s personal lives is posed by the mandate to “mobilize the health sector” by increasing public surveillance of health and interventions. It suggests a “Big Brother” program.
The advisory acknowledges that excessive use of social media as well as the internet, may cause individuals to become more socially isolated. It advocates for greater authority from the government over technology development, particularly in human interactions. The government may require technology companies to disclose data on Americans’ social connections.
The advisory promotes a “research agenda” that engages governments, organizations, corporations, schools, families, and individuals to learn more about social connectedness and separation. Unfortunately, our government’s constant drive for virtue-signaling policies means we cannot interpret such concepts as conventional values.