The freedom argument is all wrong. Living free entails choosing smart, not being stupid. Yet, many have decided the Constitution allows them to refuse to wear a mask when government bodies say otherwise, all in the name of freedom.
First, they argue that masks do not work, then switching gears, claiming that governmental action cannot abridge their rights.
The government can do many things that curtail personal freedom. This is not the Wild West, we live in a civilized society. We have given up certain freedom for the common good. This is not an a la carte buffet of only obeying laws and social responsibility with which we agree.
The government, in fact, through many taxing authorities, takes your money to pay for a wide variety of programs and services. Those are socialist roads you drive on and the socialist police department was answer a traffic accident. Socialist teachers teach little Johnny his ABCs.
You are required to have a drivers license and register your vehicle. The city can require you to keep your lawn trimmed no higher than a certain height. You can be prohibited from smoking in a restaurant, not allowed to scream fire in a movie theater, required to employ a trash service, summoned to jury duty, held to a certain speed on the road, given a ticket for not wearing a seatbelt, drafted in the event of war, not allowed to drink below a certain age, and many more government mandates. The library can even charge you for an overdue book and refuse to let you checkout another one until you fork over the fine. Conservatives might want to member that the government intrudes into a woman’s health, decisions that abridge the rights of her own body.
As a business owner you do not want to adhere to mask or distancing measures? You can be required to provide adherence to building, fire and health code restrictions. Food and drinking establishments have even more requirements.
And the list goes on. There are courts that decide disputes over governmental powers and actions. But under of system of government, actions to protect or in the best interests of the public, are not only allowed, they are expected.
After eight months, and rising infection rates, if you do not believe in the seriousness of this pandemic, you won’t. Unless you or someone close to you get seriously ill. Even then, you may claim you were not in any serious trouble, it is the old people and those with underlying health issues that would probably die with the common flu. Any rationalization will do, when you think it’s a liberal hoax or just the “China flu.”
A friend of mine tried to get her city to require a mask back in the spring. Her governing body voted no. Public outcry largely prevented that passage, along with some elected officials not having the foresight to see what was coming, or the political will. Not long after, the governor stepped in to order masks and placed restrictions on businesses and gatherings. As the infection rate lowered, many went back to pre-pandemic life and the virus came back driving infection rates and deaths higher than before. We had the opportunity early on to thwart the insidious nature of this virus, but mistakes and indifference held the upper hand and many of the 279,000 Americans died who should not have.
So much for the common flu. Originally, before much was known about the COVID-19 virus or how it spreads, the CDC understated the need to wear masks, but when more science was known, the CDC came out with stronger guidance.
In some states, governors have blocked local mask requirements, while opening bars and restaurants. One or more states have used CARES funding, meant for combat economic impact from the virus and to increases public safety, for tourism. That’s right, tourism.
Should we just let Darwin deal with the foolish? Too much is at stake and needless deaths have and will continue to occur. America is a smart country, but why are so many Americans dumb?