Wear a mask - save a life!
I am so sad that wearing a mask to battle COVID-19 has become a political issue. I am sad that in the name of politics we will discard basic science through ridicule and painting the statistics and the scientists as just more fake news. I am sad that regardless of what anyone says we have not yet eliminated the immediate threat of COVID-19 - nor does it appear that we have even made a lasting dent and for the most part we have only ourselves to blame.
For the love of God, your family and friends, and everyone else - especially yourselves - I wish I could convince you to wear a mask. If you choose not to, for whatever reason(s), I still love you and I still want to see all of us come out on the other side of this virus - just understand that we’ll not be seeing one another any time soon - I know - given it’s me talking that’s not much of a threat or a negative.
Let me be clear that I hate wearing a mask - I find them uncomfortable, they fog up my cheap drugstore reader glasses, they are hot - and it seems like it’s harder to breathe - so I wear them as little as possible which means I pretty much either stay within my bubble of safe people and safe spaces or I socially distance if I’m outside. When I do have to wear a mask - anywhere inside in public - I rip that thing off the second that I am outside and it is safe to do so. I’m pretty sure I’ve never heard anyone say “oh I like wearing a mask - they are so comfortable.” But you know what - mask wearing, social distancing and hand washing are the most effective defenses we have right now.
This should never have become a question of your freedom in the USA - wearing a mask is not exactly a supreme sacrifice, no matter what some politicians or conspiracy theorists may want you to believe. We have done many similar things before - the war time rationing in WW II - everything from butter to gasoline - we collectively did it for the greater good of all of us. The many times we have forgone a social security cost-of-living increase in order to shore up the national economy and reduce federal outlays - we did it - we didn’t like it - but we survived. How about military drafts? Talk about something that reduces your freedom - we managed to make it - we registered when called to and served when summoned - well, most did. My point is that in a federal constitutional republic we must often make personal sacrifices for the greater good - and wearing a mask during an airborne pandemic is one of those times.
I understand that there are a few of you who just simply cannot wear a mask for some medical reason. Often people will say something like “I have asthma” or “I have COPD” - and actually mask wearing reduces oxygen very little - it is far more likely that it is anxiety or fear that is driving your physical response - whatever - I do understand that there are some that just can’t wear a mask - if you are in this group how about doubling down on minimizing your interactions with others in unsafe settings and maybe not ridiculing this of us who are trying to be careful.
If you truly believe at this late date that the whole COVID-19 is just some sort of conspiracy theory - that it’s just been over-hyped in the media - that it’s nothing more than the annual flu with a fancy name - then I say you’re lucky - it means you have not watched someone gasping through the final stages - that you have no empty chairs around the family table - that nobody close to you has had to be intubated or that you have had a family member die alone because of quarantine procedures. With any luck your good luck will continue - unfortunately you can’t spread that luck to the rest of us - all you can do is try not to spread the virus, so please do.
I hate this damn pandemic - it is very disconcerting to me that I may be spending the last days of being ambulatory in a lockdown dictated by a damn virus. I so want to be out there traveling and visiting with so many of you while I still can board a train and/or climb into a car - I know - somewhat selfish on my part to ask you to help us all get there. Just please wear a mask - wash your hands and keep your distance - All of our lives depend on it.
peace be with you - Hendo