We’ve all seen this clip which has “gone viral.” Such a coincidence – that word viral.
The video shows a Costco employee detaining a man pushing a shopping cart piled with merchandise. The customer is not wearing a mask. The employee is wearing one and says Costco requires masks for everyone inside the store. The man refuses. He fumes and bloviates as the employee drags the cart away.
“Put on a mask or leave the store,” the employee says.
In another video – which claims some 4 million views – an older un-masked man tries again and again to push his way past a Florida Walmart store employee. The employee extends his arms to block the entrance. Everyone who enters, the employee says, must wear a mask. The customer complains and continues to push and shove the employee.
In yet another clip, an unmasked woman in a California Trader Joe’s is asked by other customers why she’s not wearing a mask. The woman works herself into a screaming rampage aimed at her accusers. She claims she has a breathing problem. Hmmm.
Lots of stores require shoppers to wear masks.
So. What’s the big deal? Is it so hard to do? Does it cost a lot of money? Does it hurt?
Wearing a face mask apparently is a sign of weakness for some. President Trump’s refusal to wear a mask suggests he thinks masks are for wimps and wusses. While touring a Ford Motor Co. factory in Ypsilanti, clips show everyone – everyone! – all the Ford execs and factory workers and Bill Ford himself – all wearing masks. Trump is maskless.
Lately our Bloviator-in-Chief has softened somewhat and said . . . well, he probably would wear one if he was “in a tight situation with people.”
God forbid the man should set a good example.
Mr. Blowhard also continues to plan political rallies starring himself. Photos and videos of the events show stadiums full of people packed shoulder to shoulder, hip to hip. No mandatory mask rules; no social distancing requirements. Organizers “suggest” attendees wear masks.
But they don’t.
In this strange new world we’re all navigating where an extremely contagious virus is infecting people all over the globe, we’re groping along, looking for advice, then holding on to whatever seems to make sense. We’re learning as we go. It’s on-the-job-training, rather like the experience we’ve all had called growing up and a job some are still muddling through called parenting. It’s trial and error; advance and retreat; good choices and bad choices; learning from mistakes and successes.
Experts can help this journey. Infectious diseases have been studied. Records have been kept. Experiments and studies have been done. Charts are available. Facts are facts. Pandemics have happened before and we have learned which safeguards work and which ones are of no use.
As of Sunday’s Detroit Free Press, the official count of U.S. deaths is 129,646. The official number of confirmed coronavirus cases is 2,832,492.
Picture the University of Michigan’s football stadium in Ann Arbor. It holds 107,601 people. Deaths in the U.S. would fill the stadium plus an extra end zone.
World-wide, deaths from coronavirus number 582,232. That’s nearly five and a half Michigan football stadiums.
Why do some people refuse to believe this is a pandemic, refuse to trust the experts and listen to the facts, the scientific studies, the experiments and results? What’s so hard about wearing a mask anyway --- even if you don’t think it will help?
What's the big deal?
A study reported in Clinical Infectious Diseases told of researchers who placed hamsters with the coronavirus in cages next to hamsters without the virus. They found that when surgical masks were used as a barrier between the cages infections plunged by more than half.
I wear a mask when I go out in public. Why not? Other than adding a shot of Clorox to my morning coffee, does anybody have a better idea? And if you do, what makes you an expert?
That man in Costco – Garrett is his name --- said he woke up in a free country. He refused to be a sheep.
When he leaves the store, goes to the parking lot and climbs into his car – when he gets on the freeway to go home – or wherever he goes – I’ll bet he drives on the right hand side of the road. He doesn’t want to get hit by a car coming toward him.
Very sheep-like, I’d say.