Just a couple of months ago, Joe Biden declared that the COVID-19 pandemic was over.
“The pandemic is over,” he insisted. “We still have a problem with COVID. We’re still doing a lotta work on it. But the pandemic is over.”
He then added, “If you notice, no one’s wearing masks. Everybody seems to be in pretty good shape. And so, I think it’s changing. And I think this is a perfect example of it.”
In a sense, he was right. I haven’t worn a face mask in ages, and I rarely encounter mask-wearers in the wild. And believe me: if they’re around, I notice them.
But that didn’t stop the White House from freaking out, desperately trying to “clarify” Biden’s remarks and insist that Biden didn’t really mean what he said. But his remarks reflected the undeniable fact that Americans have gotten over COVID, social distancing, mask-wearing, and lockdowns. We’re done.
Okay, most of us are. There are still a select few who continue to wear masks as if masks do something. But the willingness and readiness of Americans to move on from COVID don’t mean that the usual wannabe dictators aren’t still trying to use the pandemic to control us.
Health officials in Alameda County, Calif., are now required by state law to reinstate mask mandates in high-risk environments due to a spike in COVID cases in the area.
Due to the rise of respiratory viruses, Los Angeles County is recommending everyone over the age of two wear a mask in public places indoors. They’re not alone.
For the first ten days back after winter break, students in the Philadelphia School District will be required to wear either surgical masks or N95 or KN95 respirator masks.
New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan is advising residents to wear face masks indoors, calling them a “common sense precaution.” The New York City public schools are not yet requiring the use of face masks, but they have sent home a statement strongly advocating the use of properly-fitting masks.
The State University of New York at Purchase has reinstated its indoor mask rule in response to the increase in COVID cases, while Nassau County Community College first did the same before quickly reversing course and making the policy advisory.
Are more locally imposed mandates coming, perhaps to your area? If you live in a blue city, county, or state, it may happen.
These mask mandates are pointless. We’ve seen countless studies showing that masks aren’t effective at stopping COVID and that mask mandates did not curb COVID transmission. While N95 and KN95 masks do the best to contain aerosol particles, most fabric masks, like the ubiquitous blue surgical masks, are just 10% effective. Even the N95 and KN95 masks are only about 50% effective.
Roughly a year ago, New York Gov. Kathy Hochul imposed a statewide mask mandate for public indoor places. I resisted the mandate. Aside from one incident at a pharmacy and another at the checkout line in a supermarket — both of which were minor — I had no problems throughout the mandate, which lasted about two months. I felt it was important to resist the pointless mandate, and now, as COVID transmission and fatality rates are at their lowest levels, I have a hard time believing that there will be high rates of compliance in areas impacted by local mandates.