There have been some nasty confrontations between people over wearing face masks. One side thinks they're helpful, both at protecting themselves from COVID-19 and protecting others from contracting it if they happen to have it. The other side thinks they don't work. The divide has fallen down party lines, as Republicans learn more about the masks' inefficacy and question the so-called experts, like Dr. Anthony Fauci who has reversed his position on wearing them.
Mask proponents tell those who won't wear them that they are rude and inconsiderate and jeopardizing the health of others, especially the elderly. Those who don't wear them just want to be left alone. Now, I'm not addressing situations where the government or business requires them. I'm referring to this insistence that we must all wear them everywhere even though it's only optional.
So how effective are masks? A.J. Smuskiewicz, a biologist who used to work with bacteria and viruses, is not wearing one during this pandemic. In order to fully protect himself in the lab from viruses, he needed a full-face, silicone respirator with double HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters.
Explained Smuskiewicz, "The silicone mask provided an air-tight seal against the skin around the nose and chin, the filters blocked gaseous chemicals and airborne viruses and bacteria from entering the nose or mouth, and the clear plastic face shield protected the eyes and the rest of the face." The device was custom fitted, and he was specially trained on how to use and maintain it. He also underwent a medical examination to make sure it would not would not worsen any existing health conditions, such as respiratory or blood pressure problems.
Even the professional quality, personally fitted N95 masks/respirators used by medical personnel only block 95% of .3 microns viruses – that's what the 95 refers to. And the COVID-19 virus can be as small as .06 microns, small enough to get in and out of those respirators. On top of that, regular Americans were told not to use them, so there will be enough left for medical personnel.
The surgical masks people are wearing aren't even meant to block viruses. They are designed primarily to block large splashes of blood and other fluids that may be contaminated with pathogenic microbes and transmitted during medical procedures. They don't even pretend to claim to block a large percentage of viruses. They may block spray from someone sneezing on you, but not the viruses inside.
If the masks were so effective, why is the government still recommending social distancing?
In early March, U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams told people not to wear the masks. He said they could actually increase the spread of the virus, due to people not wearing them properly and causing them to touch their faces a lot. One thing Americans "shouldn't be doing in the general public is going out and buying masks," he said. He also tweeted, "Seriously people - STOP BUYING MASKS! They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus, but if healthcare providers can't get them to care for sick patients, it puts them and our communities at risk!"
The WHO's advice on its website at that time advised, "if you are healthy, you only need to wear a mask if you are taking care of a person with suspected 2019-nCoV infection." On March 8, Fauci said on CBS' "60 Minutes," "There's no reason to be walking around with a mask."
The CDC claims the "experts" changed their minds when they realized people without symptoms could spread the virus. Funny, since then, how many stories have you heard about this occurring? That's right, it completely disappeared out of the news. My guess is the so-called experts freaked out as the numbers increased and wanted to make people feel good as if they were doing something and would be safe. Herd mentality.
President Trump doesn't wear a mask, even though he comes into contact with hundreds of people every day, some who have been traveling. He has access to the top experts in the country. What does that tell you?
New Zealand is one of many countries that do not require or recommend wearing masks. Guess how many deaths they've had from COVID-19? 22. The government performed a high-level scientific review and found there wasn't enough evidence to recommend them. The review noted that the CDC recommended them but could not find any data to quantify what difference they made. New Zealand officials looked at Singapore's mandatory order to wear masks, which went into effect on April 15, and observed that the daily number of COVID-19 cases still increased after that.
The New Zealand government issued this statement: "Healthy people in the community are not currently required to wear a face mask for protection from COVID-19 in New Zealand. In our current environment, the potential benefits of requiring masks to be worn by all healthy people in the community are not felt to outweigh the potential risks."
I'm sure most mask proponents mean well. They really think they are keeping people safer by wearing them. It's hard to blame them considering the conflicting information we've gotten from our leaders and so-called experts. But they need to stop being so rude and condescending to those of us who have done the research and concluded otherwise. They accuse us of not caring about the elderly, but these are the same people who support euthanasia. It's a ruse.
Now that the left has started rioting, notice you hear nothing more about wearing masks and social distancing. New York requires masks in public where social distancing isn't possible, but it's clear that hundreds of protesters aren't complying. Why the change in attitude? Is it because the onerous restrictions were hurting conservatives more initially, and now that the left is rioting no one wants to bother them? It's evidence the masks really aren't necessary.