[Any discussion of the sad and destructive mask mania inflicted on American society—and its children—by the dishonest and incompetent public health establishment and the fear-mongering media must be introduce by Major Clipton’s versatile coda to “Bridge on the River Kwai.”]
Masking has been madness from the very beginning, though it is particularly mad (and maddening) now. Yesterday I saw a couple escorting their tiny children—three-years-old at most— to a CVS. Their faces were tightly bound in cloth (as in useless) masks, like their parents. I so wanted to stop them and ask 1) “Why are you doing this?” and 2) “What, if any, in your political affiliation?” The odds of parents inflicting this on their children not being loyal, lifetime Democrats must be 1000 to one….which is nuts. How wearing a dubious piece of medical equipment (or costuming) became a partisan badge is great topic for sociological research—or a stage farce. I would not have believed, if you told me two years ago that we would have created a large group of virtue-signaling phobics who would still insist on masking even when the pandemic had been down-graded to the level of a seasonal flu, and the benefits of masks have been seriously challenged.
At this point, mask advocates are pushing this anti-social and destructive measure at least a much to create the habit of kow-towing to authority and living in perpetual anxiety and fear so that government incursions on liberty and the enjoyment of life seem benign. It is the embodiment of what Adam Ellwanger calls “Current Thingism:
What, then, is “Current Thingism”? Current Thingism is the default mindset of a certain segment of the American population: typically, the professional, liberal, educated, urban caste of society. Current Thingism is an enduring assumption that whatever the Current Thing happens to be, it should, in fact, be the Current Thing—the issue among issues.
Current Thingism also enables some judgment on the part of the Current Thingist. Because the Current Thing deserves our total attention and deference, anyone who disputes the existence or the urgency of the Current Thing is a problem. The person who does not concede the urgency of the Current Thing is dumb, dangerous, or both. Remember the treatment of those who doubted the efficacy of masks?
It doesn’t require remembering. This is still ongoing.
- A group of USC and UCLA doctors, in a letter to the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors wrote way back in February:
It is clear from these data that infections continued to increase despite the imposition of the mask mandate suggesting limited or no efficacy of the mask mandate.
Four of the doctors wrote an op-ed for the Orange County Register on July 22, saying:
Now in mid-2022 we have much better data. Exhaustive tracking of in-school COVID spread was indistinguishable with and without student mask use in studies in Spain, a conclusion repeated in two separate COVID waves. Studies of student masking with control groups in Georgia, North Dakota, Finland and the UK have all found the same lack of any clear benefit. One randomized controlled trial showed no significant benefit to the mask wearer, and a second randomized trial found a slight benefit (and only in older adults) that was not reproduced with a different analysis of the same data.
- Meanwhile, Ethics Villain Dr. Anthony Fauci said during an event hosted by the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center in Seattle, “When you tell people they need to mask in an indoor congregate setting when you’re in a zone that has a high dynamic of infection — that is looked upon by a lot of people, not everybody, as an encroachment on your freedom. We’ve never had that before. It’s almost inexplicable.”
It’s only inexplicable if no one has explained to you what the United States of American is all about. It is inexplicable that any public officials would say such a stupid thing out loud.
- California school officials called police to have a 4-year-old boy removed from the classroom because he wasn’t wearing a mask. After all, mandatory masking was “policy,” the principal explained, so there! The boy suffers from sensory issues and has had difficulty wearing masks (as do I, for other reasons.) Both the principal and the school superintendent defaulted to rote blather when defending the masking mandate. Superintendent Ayindé Rudolph said in a statement, “Our primary responsibility as a school district is the safety of students and staff members in order to create a peaceful learning and working environment for all on our campuses.”
And the evidence that forcing children to wear masks is safe and peaceful is…?
“They told me to force it on him. They are basically telling me to assault and batter my son. I do have a medical background, I’ve worked extensively in the healthcare environment. I’m well-versed in medical law. And in essence, they are breaking it. They feel like they can walk all over it.If a patient does not offer consent, they can not touch the patient. We’re going to continue to challenge this.”
What is sinister is that the forced masking serves the same purpose as forced wearing of Nazi arm bands in the Hitler Youth. (It is California, after all.)
Students and staff in the School District of Philadelphia are required to wear face masks for the first 10 days of the upcoming school year. Why? Just to show who’s boss, I guess.
“For the first 10 days of the new school year – from August 29 through September 9 – all students and staff will be required to wear masks while in school, regardless of the COVID-19 Community Level. This is an extra precaution for everyone’s health and well-being since increased end-of-summer social gatherings may heighten the risk of exposure to COVID-19,” a post on the district’s website notes. “The whole thing is, mandates aren’t working at all,” Dr. Marc Siegel told Fox News. “So, you know, they just obscure the question about whether there’s any public health value in actually doing any of this. I mean, I think if you’re at a high risk, there is. So if I was in an area with a lot of spread, and I was at high risk, I might choose to wear a mask indoors.” Siegel said “Mandates for ten days are like a sign of hypocrisy.”
Ya think, Doc?
SUNY New Paltz Professor Jessica Nydia Pabón-Colón announced on Twitter that she will be enforcing mask mandates in her classroom, even though the school no longer requires them. She is even “building mask wearing” into her syllabus. She argues that “Refusing to mask indoors is a manifestation of ableism and racism, an exercise of individual privilege that tells the most vulnerable that their health does not matter.”
That’s right: if you don’t wear a mask, you’re a racist. We knew this was coming, didn’t we?
- This is my favorite, though: The Edinburgh International Festival had to cancel a performance of Ludwig van Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony featuring the Edinburgh Festival Chorus and the visiting Philadelphia Orchestra because the orchestra musicians demanded that the chorus wear mask while singing. The Chorus, to its artistic and general “We don’t bow to weenies” credit, refused.
You will note that the orchestra wasn’t going to be masked while playing trumpets, oboes or flutes.
9 thoughts on “Mask Madness Update!”
“Now in mid-2022 we have much better data.”
Not really. Numerous studies had been done on using masks to slow the spread of viruses. The consensus was that it doesn’t. Some studies found people got sicker with the masks (moisture, bacteria, etc). The CDC did a study in the Spring of 2020 that found masks didn’t work and those people had to apologize for publishing a study that didn’t reach the ‘Current Thing’ conclusion. All these later studies showed is that they couldn’t get a study to show masks work even when they REALLY tried to get them to.
The masking policies were a complete repudiation of science in favor of superstition and fearmongering.
What gets me aren’t the people choosing to wear masks…. That’s a them decision, and their risk appetite and comprehension of the issue is probably different than mine. It’s not even the people who wear the shitty, ineffective masks. What gets me are the people who choose to wear masks incorrectly. Bonus points for wearing them alone and in a car.
Masks aren’t required damn near anywhere anymore, so what does it say about the person who makes the decision to wear the mask as a chin diaper?
“I believe that masks are necessary, but am too stupid to wear it properly”?
“I believe that masks are ineffective, and they annoy me, but I’m wearing it because x”?
x being social pressure, or signaling virtue, or their wife nagging them…. Because really… What else is there?
Well, Perfesser Jessica Nydia Pabón-Colón is obviously well-qualified to insist on mask kabuki, since she does have a PhD in Performance Studies and is a “feminist performance studies scholar.” Whatever the hell that is.
Thank you so much for this one.
I just got an email from the local Star Trek convention that does a show every year in the late Fall. Citing the variant that began picking up last year around convention time, they have decided the masks will be required by all attendants at the convention. This is a low-attendance convention. The chances of super-spreading is minimal, I assure you. (By contrast, I was stuck amidst hundreds in a photo op area to meet the four Hobbits in July for over an hour completely unmasked and never got a sniffle).
Dragon-Con – a far more substantial and heavily-attended show – in Atlanta this coming weekend is requiring masks regardless of vaccination status as they did last year.
The pandemic has created some odd protocols since conventions have resumed. Some celebrities wear face masks at their autograph booths, some don’t. Some tables are fitted with plastic screens separating you from the celebrity doing autographs and some aren’t. Then there are the professional photo ops (you pay extra to have a photo taken with you and the celebrity with a fancy camera and a solid backdrop with good lighting rather than trusting a volunteer with your cell phone at the autograph table) – some celebrities use plastic dividers during professional photo ops separating the celebrity from you, some don’t. It’s all up to the individual star.
Last April, there were plastic screens in front of the autograph boots for the celebrity guests from a famous television series. All three celebrities came out wearing masks.
They signed behind the plastic screens. However, if a fan wanted a camera photo with the celebrity: Celebrity 1 stepped around the table, pulled off his mask and posed with his arm around the fan, celebrity 2 did the same, celebrity 3 stayed behind the table, took the mask off and stood up while the fan stood in front of the able.
No one could figure out what the point of the plastic screens and the mask wearing was if two of the celebrities were willing to remove their masks and stand right next to fans for camera photos. All three celebrities were using plastic dividers for their professional photo ops. Makes no sense.
Of course, sci-fi and comic conventions are generally largely attended by large numbers of vulnerable people who “follow the science” so that rather does explain some things. Also the conventions are held indoors and generally you are surrounded by hundreds of people all day long so I get the risk.
I don’t get why so many people at the outdoor Indiana State Fair on Thursday, particularly minorities, as our host has pointed out, were walking around outside wearing face masks in 83 degree weather. People watching while eating deep-fried brownies can be so illuminating.
‘ No one could figure out what the point of the plastic screens and the mask wearing was if two of the celebrities were willing to remove their masks and stand right next to fans for camera photos’
It’s a question of length of exposure. It takes 15 minutes or more of exposure to an infected person to catch it. A quick photo is low risk.
Those same celebrities had plastic dividers for the professional photo ops that separated them from the fans. Those photo ops literally take 10 seconds. Length of exposure is a fine consideration if applied consistently from activity to activity.
I have long believed that if Donald Trump had pushed mask use, masks would have become another fascist symbol like MAGA hats. Anyone wearing a mask would have been called out on social media as a pro-Trump racist and doxxed.
Yep. If he said the FBI and then DOJ were apolitical, the Democrats would declare them arms of the oppressive evil state.