In Defense of Mask Avoidance

All for one and one for all.

Charlie Kufs
Jul 19 · 5 min read
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Image by chiplanay from Pixabay

I don’t wear a mask to prevent the spread of Covid-19. As a high-risk individual, I self-quarantine. I haven’t left my property since February 2, 2020. I get all my supplies through no-contact delivery services. Every day, a similarly quarantined family member dons protective gear and disinfects all our deliveries, even the mail. Thus, I view mask-wearing and mask-avoidance as an interested but distanced third party.

There are quite a few things we do because we are told to. We wear seat belts in cars and airplanes. We wear helmets and knee pads when riding on motorcycles or bicycles. We wear restraints on amusement park rides. We wear safety equipment for sky diving and bungee jumping. We even wear boots and slickers in the rain (thanks Mom). These aren’t all required, but we recognize they are for our own protection, so we do them. Some things we do because it’s the only way to get what we want. You have to wear a shirt and shoes to eat at restaurants. Some places of worship either require or prohibit head coverings. We provide personal information to buy cars and guns, or obtain a credit card. We also do things for the sake of other people because we are told to. We submit to screenings at airports, schools, public buildings, and entertainment venues. We submit to police stops and searches. We allow government agencies (NSA, FBI, CIA, DHS, DoD, IRS) and private corporations to collect our personal information. Nevertheless, for whatever reason, some people chafe at the idea of wearing a mask to protect themselves and others from Covid-19. It can even escalate to the point of uncontrolled rage.

So given the government requirement (at least at this time in my area) and societal imperative to wear masks, what are the reasons for not wearing them? As far as I can gather, there are at least ten reasons:

  1. Pandemic Denial — Yes there are some people who don’t believe the Covid-19 pandemic is real. These people believe that it’s a hoax or that it’s just like any other flu. That’s what they are told by the news sources they listen to.

There are counterarguments to all of these reasons but, as with politics and religion, deeply held beliefs are immune to logic. There are also alternatives to wearing masks and social distancing, like wearing a face shield or just staying at home, but some people don’t consider these to be viable alternatives.

The two most tragic aspects of this dilemma are that:

  • We are receiving conflicting messages from our political leadership concerning what we should be doing. Even scientists haven’t been consistent, either over time or between each other, although this is really part of the scientific discovery process.

So what is the root cause of some people refusing to social distance and wear masks?

  • Some researchers might suggest that mask avoidance is a reaction to an authority figure trying to control a personal choice, or even be a reaction of a childlike personality.

Whatever the root cause of mask avoidance might be, whether psychological or biochemical, it’s probably more complex than just ignorance, disinformation, misdirection, confusion, personal characteristics, or resistance to authority. Society should recognize that all people are unique in their own ways. Individuals have their own motivations for what they do and don’t do in their personal lives. Society should not dictate individual choices. Individuals, on the other hand, should recognize that they are a member of a society and they are bound to follow the rules and necessary conventions of that society. This is especially true when their actions affect the well-being of others.

Mask wearing is a clear case of “all for one and one for all.” The best way to defend yourself from criticism for not wearing a mask is to honestly examine the reasons why you don’t want to wear a mask. It may reveal a lot about you as an individual.

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Originally published at http://randomterrabytes.net on July 19, 2020.

Random Terrabytes

All the things the voices warn us not to say out loud.

Charlie Kufs

Written by

I’ve analyzed data for over 40 years, written a book and over 150 blogs, been a trainer/public speaker, and was a PG and SSGB. Now retired, I worship cats.

Random Terrabytes

We all have those random thoughts that come to us in the shower or in dreams. We may not be experts on the topic but it intrigues us into thinking about it further. Random Terrabytes if is for those random thoughts that you spend a lot more time researching and thinking about.

Charlie Kufs

Written by

I’ve analyzed data for over 40 years, written a book and over 150 blogs, been a trainer/public speaker, and was a PG and SSGB. Now retired, I worship cats.

Random Terrabytes

We all have those random thoughts that come to us in the shower or in dreams. We may not be experts on the topic but it intrigues us into thinking about it further. Random Terrabytes if is for those random thoughts that you spend a lot more time researching and thinking about.

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