Biden administration generals are fighting the last war. Last week, they mandated that large businesses and health-care facilities require that their workers get vaccinated for COVID-19. The next day, Pfizer announced an antiviral pill to treat the virus. Pfizer\u2019s pill is 89 percent effective. A Merck antiviral pill for COVID-19 (with only about 50 percent effectiveness) is already in use in Britain. COVID-19 treatment pills destroy any vestige of logic or justification for Biden\u2019s vaccine mandates. No matter how someone contracts the virus, these pills prevent serious illness \u2014 hospitalization and death. With double lines of defense against the coronavirus \u2014vaccination and now these new antiviral treatment pills \u2014 mandates have become unnecessary. Last Saturday, the Fifth U.S. Court of Appeals issued an emergency stay of the Biden business mandate, saying it raises \u201cgrave statutory and constitutional issues.\u201d Quite apart from the legal issues, the mandates ignore science and logic. The logic of vaccine mandates has always been weak and self-contradictory insofar as their implied purpose is protecting vaccinated people from unvaccinated people. If vaccines are effective (95 percent effective in Pfizer\u2019s case), then vaccinated people face little risk from unvaccinated people. If the vaccines are ineffective, then why should anyone get them? Naturally, there are minor exceptions to this logic. First, a vaccine that is 95 percent effective is 5 percent ineffective. Second, there have been \u201cbreakthrough cases\u201d of largely unknown number and origin. They could represent the 5 percent ineffectiveness factor, and they could demonstrate that the vaccines are less effective against variants of the virus. Finally, studies suggest that the efficacy of vaccines diminish over time. All three of these minor exceptions are addressed by booster shots \u2014 in the same fashion as annual vaccines protect against the seasonal flu. Flu shots are in effect boosters, after the effectiveness of the prior season\u2019s flu shot has waned. Each year flu shots are recalibrated for recurring and potential new variants, and each year they are less than 100 percent effective. There is always some risk. There is a critical difference between flu shots and COVID-19 vaccines. The flu shots have no back-up. There is no flu pill. The new antiviral treatment pills for COVID-19 dramatize further the original illogic of mandates: If vaccines and boosters and treatment pills are even more effective, as science and logic say they are, then unvaccinated people pose virtually no threat to vaccinated people. Now add the new corollary: Unvaccinated people do not even endanger themselves because they can take the Merck or Pfizer pill (once approved) if they do contract COVID-19. They don\u2019t even burden the health-care system, since the pills are intended for home use. Now most Americans got vaccinated as soon as they could. Most consider the vaccines a virtual godsend, an amazing demonstration of American scientific and pharmaceutical prowess. Most don\u2019t really understand why someone would not get vaccinated. But we live in a free country where people have the liberty to do what they want if they aren\u2019t threatening anyone else, don\u2019t we? Without pretending to litigate the legal issues, it is reasonable to see vaccine mandates as an unnecessary violation of personal liberty. What could be more invasive than the government dictating what you must do with your own body \u2014 your life and your life only? Parsing the issue further, there is a vast difference between government dictating a nationwide vaccine policy and a business \u2014 or any organization \u2014 establishing an organizational vaccine requirement. If an organization adopts a vaccine requirement, an anti-vaccine employee can quit and find another job. Beyond these observations, let\u2019s leave the Fifth Circuit to begin the process of sorting out the legal and constitutional issues. That is not to say that vaccinated people will not contract the virus, nor to say that some vaccinated people will not get seriously ill and die. Until there is a lifelong vaccine, such as the polio vaccine, COVID-19 will be a part of our lives. In the meantime, the real danger comes from a frustrated Biden administration misusing urgent emergency powers. For Biden & Co., the already dissipating 20-month-old pandemic is not receding fast enough. The administration is fighting yesterday\u2019s COVID-19 battle without realizing that the antiviral pills have radically altered the war. Like it or not, COVID-19 has taken hold and is here to stay, but not as the threat to which we were originally defenseless. Biden\u2019s COVID-19 vaccine mandates would set a dangerous precedent. They should never take hold. Who\u2019s to say what the next \u201cemergency\u201d would be that government might use as a pretext to exercise such overriding power? Red Jahncke is president of the Townsend Group International in Greenwich. A version of this article appeared originally on Real Clear Politics .