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(LifeSiteNews) — American Airlines canceled more than 12% of its flights over the weekend, citing “weather” and “staffing” issues amid ongoing unrest over its COVID-19 vaccine mandate for employees.

“With additional weather throughout the system, our staffing begins to run tight as crew members end up out of their regular flight sequences,” CNN quotes an American representative as saying about the cancellation of 634 flights Sunday and a total of more than 1,500 since Friday.

CNN cites complications caused by “two days of severe winds in Dallas-Fort Worth, its largest hub,” as well as “buyouts and early retirement packages” offered to employees last year as a pandemic cost-cutting measure, but neglects to mention another factor: American’s assurance to President Joe Biden that it would comply with the administration’s not-yet-implemented vaccine mandate.

It is “unacceptable that your administration is using the threat of contractual measures as a coercion to single out American workers in a vital national industry,” House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee ranking member Rep. Sam Graves and aviation subcommittee senior member Rep. Garrett Graves (no relation) told Biden in a letter last month.

Biden has dismissed job losses as an acceptable tradeoff for increased vaccine compliance, largely ignoring lingering safety concerns stemming from the fact that the COVID shots were developed and released far faster than any previous vaccine. 

Defenders stress that their development did not start from scratch, but rather relied on years of prior research into mRNA technology; and that one of the innovations of the Trump administration’s Operation Warp Speed was conducting various aspects of the development process concurrently rather than sequentially, eliminating delays unrelated to safety. However, those factors do not fully account for the condensing of clinical trial phases — each of which can take anywhere from 1–3 years on their own — to just three months apiece. 

While cases of severe harm reported to the federal Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) after taking COVID shots represent less than one percent of total doses administered in the United States, a 2010 report submitted to the US Department of Health & Human Services’ (HHS) Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) warned that VAERS caught “fewer than 1% of vaccine adverse events.” May reporting from NBC News quotes several mainstream experts acknowledging “gaps” in federal vaccine monitoring.

“Last week, I received a letter from a Wisconsin constituent who is a pilot for a U.S.-based airline,” Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) wrote last month. “The most alarming anecdote in this letter involved a recently vaccinated pilot who ‘sustained, over a two-day period, partial blindness in one eye and then severe migraine headaches.” His doctor told him he had suffered “micro strokes.’ The pilot did not report his medical condition to his Federal Aviation Administration medical examiner because he feared ‘he would lose his pilot certifications, and hence his livelihood.’”

To support American Airlines employees in court, please see the LifeFunder campaign set up on their behalf.

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