Everyone has his or her favorite “mask” story. There’s the guy or gal we see, then do a doubletake when ee notice they’re alone driving in their car, all alone, but still with that mask strapped firmly around the ears. On a couple of occasions I’ve had the urge to do a U-turn and follow the car to see just how far that person is driving….alone in that car…wearing a mask.
Just for the purpose of scientific observation, mind you.
I say that because there is a laziness factor involved there. And almost everyone, in their routine dally comings and going; to work, the grocery store, or in my case, the gym, has an unwritten “mask cut-off” time in the back of their mind. An Amazon delivery driver, a USPS route carrier, off and on, on and off, every few minutes? They may just decide to keep it on. Is this born of laziness? Corporate appearance? Practicality? Or genuine personal fear?
Many give little thought about the true risks of Covid but the appearance of indifference, if they’re seen without one while in the employ of a nationally recognized uniform, makes a difference, I think. Throw in the laziness factor, the wisest choice is often that it’s better to err on the side of caution and just wear it all the time.
And maybe that gal alone in her car, wearing a mask, is one of those people.
Then, there’s the Fashion aspect of the mask. As you know that’s become a both a cottage industry, as every local pizza joint now has some friend making 50 masks a week with Tony’s name on it, paying a buck a piece and selling them for three. My wife made about a hundred and donated them to her church to be given to the poor, then quickly tired of it by June of last year, and took up another hobby; buying old Singer sewing machines and repairing them.
A retired county health nurse, she’s big on doing whatever health authorities tell her, always with a snappy salute, but always with enough sense to know the bureaucratic side. So in her own way she has compromised the conflict by taking the shots, but simply not going out in public any longer, buying all her groceries and even dinners, online. (That’s why I know the habits of UPS and Amazon delivery people. They come about five times a week.) Her grandson was born eight months ago, and her only outings is a three-times a week visit to their house to babysit, three miles away. Like another friend of mine who took the shots only because it was the only way she and her hubby could continue taking their annual cruise, she is silent in the Vax vs Anti-Vax war, which is both wise and well-mannered.
But in some circles that mask is now part of high fashion. At Atlanta’s Hartsfield Airport, while sitting in a Delta departure area, I noticed a lady with a black-sequined mask that matched her black-sequined leather purse and hat. But the ladies have nothing on the guys, especially younger guys, under 30, who, I swear, I’m not lying, will stand in front of the dressing mirror in the YMCA shower room, adjusting it, stepping back for a full-body gander, then stepping forward for a re-adjustment, before heading out onto the gym floor, and later, after their shower, before heading out the door, where now they have to scan out, which gives them yet another pause-and-pose opportunity.
And this while state rules handed down by our out-going governor, with nowhere to go once he leaves office, a genuinely useless behind-the-scenes stooge of the Left’s criminal class, the sort you might have noticed in Frank Capra’s 1939 “Mr Smith Goes to Washington”, say that masks are NOT required to be worn in the actual workout areas, still 90% + of all the males wear masks there anyway, even though lifting alone, several feet beyond the 6-foot distance rule, from any other member.
Me? I still wear one of those surgical masks that were passed around at the start of the Covid craze in March, 2020. I have about a dozen, squished and folded in my gym bag and car, as I always forget the nice one my insurance company sent me.
I know in urban areas, gang bangers think this mask idea is a godsend. Now a kid with a Midnight Special tucked inside his trousers can march into any 7-11 without fear of even a second glance until show-and-tell time.
So, how much of this national Covid kabuki dance is based on Fear is hard to calibrate.
But we know it is real, and in certain elements of society it is palpable. And where it is palpable it as also political.
First of all, there are the Covid numbers-crunchers themselves, esp CDC, and their early desire to over-magnify the threat from the beginning for other reasons, ranging from the nanny-impulse native to all government establishments when they finally get their first day back in the spotlight after decades, to their sophomoric inability to reconcile real statistics (case counts, death counts and rates) that are reported from several private and state agencies. Anyone who knows anything about statistics knows there has been real fraud in reporting, including cover-ups (e.g., New York’s elderly death trap under Gov Cuomo…along with others) that could/should be charged criminally. But we also know that when dealing with “science- bureaucrats” it’s always a hard choice between conspiracy and incompetence. So do we indict or just socially demote, which among the citizenry-at-large is already going on?
Secondly, there is Fear, especially the generational fear, namely the knowledge that the largest portion of our public sector and teaching establishment is made up of millennials, and they were largely raised on a steady diet of Fear from kindergarten forward; from a stinging behind to the word “No” at home to not getting a trophy or a bloody nose on the playground at school…all the things that were considered necessary rites-of-passage for the 10-plus generations before them.
That public schools are not re-opening is because of public school unions, (which during Obama we called “skirt-unions”), and which is an integral part of the public sector union front that now outnumbers trade unions (called “guy unions”; you know, members who chewed tobacco and carried a pipe wrench in their hip pocket.) If you’ll recall, of Obama’s first infrastructure-stimulus bill in 2009, just under a trillion, not a dollar was spent on repairing or building new bridges, but rather was gobbled up by SEIU government workers and school-unions.
These are the same groups, 12 years later and stronger, who don’t want to re-open the schools, and while there is obviously a strong political component, on a personal level at the class room level, Fear is a large, large component. The unions just gave teachers a way to say “No”, again, a word they never heard while growing up.
If you haven’t noticed, since few like to read chapter-long explanations about anything these days, I’m doing a series about a newer kind of grass roots action, based on successful private citizen action from our past, all at the local level. It’s a series, but they will get shorter, and shorter.
All I can do is provide moral and legal (Natural Law) and constitutional justifications for what I have suggested. Things to chew on.
I do know, however, that nothing can be accomplished so long as we lie to ourselves that we are somehow doing both God’s and the Founders’ work, not to mention the generations of shoulders we stand on, by sitting on our haunches in front of out internet and cussing cats on Twitter.
And by the way, I’m certain Twitter knows that.