Wearing a mask is a sign of respect for our fellow humans. What seems like a simple request by governments and businesses has, unfortunately, sparked violent altercations across the country.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment received more than 3,000 comments on a May 1, 2020 query on Facebook from people who explained why they don’t wear them.
- Seventy-four percent said face coverings were uncomfortable.
- Twenty-six percent said they were inconvenient.
Concerns ranged from air quality to an infringement of civil liberties.
My interpretation: It’s a pain in the butt, and I don’t want to inconvenience myself in any way.
Part of the problem, I believe, stems from the fact that the CDC had deemed masks ineffective at the beginning of the pandemic. Dr. Payal Kohli, the Health Expert for 9News in Denver, explains the change of guidance this way:
Dr. Kohli: Let me explain: the guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention a few weeks ago suggested that you should not wear a mask because it does not protect YOU very well. It does not offer 0% protection (it protects from large droplets) but it is definitely not the level of protection offered from an N95.
It also makes you touch your face more, so at that time, it was believed the risk outweighs the benefit. Since then, we have learned that a good proportion of those who are spreading this disease are people without symptoms and they are spreading this virus through just talking. Therefore, we are now recommending that people wear masks to prevent their droplets from getting out. We always knew that masks were good at preventing the spread of your droplets to others — what we learned which was new and has changed our thinking is that the virus can spread from asymptomatic people who are talking (hence the masks) to protect others from your droplets. The risk of touching your face is still there, but if we stop those asymptomatic spreaders that will make a significant impact on spread.
For those irate that their civil liberties are being violated:
The government already dictates what we wear in many aspects of our lives. What happens if you walk down Main Street nude? Ever try to go to public school in only a pair of short shorts and a crop top?
Many restaurants frequently use the “No shoes, no shirt, no service” but, in Texas, it is not illegal to enter a restaurant barefooted.
The bottom line is we will adjust to wearing a mask as we conformed to rules banning smoking in restaurants and bars. After all, these rules were designed to protect others from the harm of second-hand smoke.
If you care about others, please wear your mask.