I don’t understand how masks have become politicized. Check that. I understand how it happened. It makes me sad, is what it does. [takes deep breath]
Dallas County commissioners voted today — after a heated debate — to require that businesses mandate masks. Customers and employees have to wear them (except when eating). Though it’s unclear who would enforce the order, business owners face a $500 fine if they don’t follow it.
Look, people. When we go shopping, we put on a shirt. We wear shoes. On the way there, we wear a seatbelt. When we go to a restaurant, we don’t pee on the floor or get into a belching contest with our tablemates. When you agree to live around other people, there are just certain standards of behavior that come with the bargain. Same deal with the face mask. No one is impinging on your freedom. When you wear a mask, you are doing a quintessentially Texan thing. You are being friendly to strangers.
A couple of other points. Check out this video posted today by UT Southwestern. It’s part of their “What to Know” series. Two guys in this video have some good advice for you. They are Dallas’ COVID-19 czar, Dr. Kelvin Baggett, and UTSW infectious diseases expert Dr. Richard Medford (who, by the way, says that UTSW predicts COVID-19 hospitalizations in Dallas County will rise by 20 percent over the next two weeks). Baggett and Medford give some practical advice on how you can more safely move through this world during a pandemic. They talk about stuff you should do before and after participating in a large-scale public protest. They talk about how their own families handle themselves when they leave the house.
You know what they do? They maintain physical distance from other people. They practice good hand hygiene. And they WEAR A MASK.