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OPINION: The great mask debate

The Henry Hype

What’s becoming increasingly clear during this pandemic is there’s going to be people screaming that their rights are being infringed on, even if it’s only being done to keep everyone healthy.

I’ve been seeing an increasing number of incidents, in Canada and the United States, of people pushing back against health orders to wear a mask whenever it’s not possible to social distance.

From people refusing to wear a mask in businesses that make it a requirement, wrecking a display of masks, or making a scene in a hospital for being asked to put one on, people are throwing tantrums because they’re being told to wear something over their face that protects themselves and others.

Every time I hear about these situations, it makes me realize just how selfish some people can be and that a lot of people have never been told ‘no’ in their lives.

There’s been a lot of conspiracy theories going around how masks are a ‘communist or socialist lie’ (or something along those lines), which just makes me scratch my head.

Who has anything to gain from people wearing a mask while they’re out and about?

If it stops the spread of the coronavirus, why are people fighting it so much?

I think this conversation comes back to privilege, and that a lot of people haven’t felt the negative impacts of the coronavirus. They haven’t watched a loved one struggle to stay alive after testing positive for it or experienced it first hand.

It’s like an ostrich sticking its head into the sand; if you can’t see the problem then it’s not really happening.

With over 100,000 cases of COVID-19 in Canada and around 8,700 deaths, I really don’t understand why people aren’t taking it more seriously.

Sure, there are areas like ours where our numbers are low but the threat is still there. Just last week, two new cases were confirmed in the Bonnyville area after months of nothing. Even as the province opens up, there’s still a huge threat of a second wave that could shut down the economy again and force us all back into our homes for an undetermined amount of time.

The other solution to not having to wear a mask is staying home, which is something super easy that anyone can do.

If you don’t want to wear a mask for yourself wear it for others, like myself, who are immune-compromised and may not recover if they test positive for the coronavirus.

Just wear a mask.

Robynne Henry, Bonnyville Nouvelle