October 22, 2020

Facemasks Revisited

 

Facemasks Revisited

The wearing of a face mask when in public continues to be a matter of controversy.  A video of a man trying to force himself past a Walmart employee in Florida has gone viral.  A women in Ventura County California castigates county council members for requiring masks saying she refuses to wear a mask because she is “not a terrorist” and “not a sex slave”.

I work at the Indiana Government Center (North), and the policy of wearing a mask has been instituted.  My particular department (Indiana Department of Environmental Management) has stated a policy of wearing masks unless you are in your own personal cube.  And yet some people refuse to wear the mask.  The commissioner of IDEM “strongly encourages” the policy, but has stated the policy will not be enforced by dismissal or other disciplinary measures.

What is going on that this issue has become so fractious? As this Wired article notes:

THE RECENT BACK-AND-FORTH debate—and policy reversal—over the use of face masks to prevent the spread of Covid-19 reveals a glaring double standard. For some reason, we’ve been treating this one particular matter of public health differently. We don’t see op-eds that ask whether people really need to keep 6 feet away from each other on the street, as opposed to 3 feet, or that cast doubt on whether it’s such a good idea to promote bouts of handwashing that are 20 seconds long. But when it comes to covering our faces, a scholarly hyper-rigor has been applied.

Part of the problem is that for months, the federal government has recommended that the general public not wear masks, in part to help preserve them for health care workers. Guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention until now has said the general public did not need to wear masks unless they came into contact with coronavirus patients or if they were sick.  But the CDC has reversed itself recently and recommended the general public SHOULD wear masks.  Such reversals from the “experts” always results in a lot of public hoopla.  Although, if someone is an “expert” why wouldn’t we expect them to change their mind in the light of new information?  Isn’t that what good scientists are supposed to do?

Here’s the problem – the research literature on mask usage doesn’t provide definitive answers. There are no large-scale clinical trials proving that personal use of masks can prevent pandemic spread; and the ones that look at masks and influenza have produced equivocal results.  The scientific basis for health care workers using masks doesn’t come from clinical trials of influenza outbreaks or pandemics. It comes from laboratory simulations showing that masks can prevent viral particles from getting through.

This article, in Ars Technica , summarizes the current level of research on the efficacy of mask wearing.  This article in BetterHumans summarizes the data rather well for the layman.

Despite all this seeming equivocation on the part of public health scientists, a clear consensus has emerged; and this is the key point I wish to emphasizeThe consensus is that even simple cloth masks are effective in minimizing the transmission of the virus if the wearer is infected.

The fact that someone can be asymptomatic and still a transmitter of the virus makes this a very important, if not vital, point.  One of the argumentative points the Ventura county women was making was that she was a “healthy American” and so didn’t need to wear a mask.  The problem is that she had no way of knowing that for certain, even if she had been tested recently.  One can be infected and transmissive for up to two weeks or more before symptoms become obvious.  No one can see the virus and no one knows at which point they become a danger to people around them.  That is why it is necessary for YOU to wear a mask in public.

If you disagree with me, and think you have some constitutional right to infect your neighbors, then answer me this:  If you needed surgery, would you want the doctors and nurses on your surgical team to be masked or not?

Don’t be a hypocrite.  Especially if you profess to be a Christian.  Shouldn’t you be obeying Philippians 2:3-4?

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

Even Republican allies of Trump and right-leaning news pundits, seeing the surge in corona virus cases, have agreed that wearing a mask is prudent public policy.

Because, as noted in the Philippians verses quoted above, it is a vain conceit for you not to wear a mask in public.  There is really no good reason not to love your neighbor as you love yourself.

Be a good neighbor.

Put the mask on.

Comments

  1. The lie told by Dr. Fauci at the beginning of this did terrible harm . It weakened trust in his advice and gave the foolish anti mask people some cover. That being said I would guesstimate 96 percent of people in my area wear mask. I think it is selfish and just wrong to not wear a mask. Good points but again the ones who need to read this will not.

    • David Greene says

      It seems a bit pejorative to say he was lying early on when very little was known about the virus and how it spread. A lot has been learned between then and now.

      • Robert F says

        It’s more than a bit pejorative.

      • Just google Fauci lied mask , he lied on purpose and admitted it.

        • Did you read Mike the G’s article, Dan? He explained why masks weren’t advised early in the process — they were trying to save PPE for healthcare workers, and besides that, we had no idea of the extent of the virus nor were we clear on the transmission of this virus. As Mike said, when new information comes to light, credible scientists change their counsel. That is the work of science and that is how to apply it to public policy. Dr. Fauci is not a liar. He’s a good scientist who’s navigating a changing landscape.

          • Headless Unicorn Guy says

            But FAUCI LIED!!!!! is The Party Line(TM).
            Anything else is DISLOYAL!!!!!

            • Robert F says

              In a way it’s surprising that he didn’t lie, having spent so much time in the last months around a practiced and habitual liar. It can get hard to distinguish truth from lies around that kind of person. We should be thankful that it didn’t rub off on Fauci.

          • Dan from Georgia says

            Dan,

            As a scientist myself who has actually delved into scientific journals…it is NOT lying to change view and theories on how nature works. Journals freely publish articles and rebuttals that are all vetted by their peers. Science isn’t static. This pandemic is undergoing scrutiny and, like Chaplain Mike stated so well, new info comes to light and the experts have to adjust their counsel. That is not dishonesty but just how the world of science works.

            What is the problem with wearing a mask anyways?

            • Headless Unicorn Guy says

              What is the problem with wearing a mask anyways?

              1) It’s for Pansies and Sissies. (First Things)
              2) Not MANLY (schoolyard hypermasculinity)
              3) Lack Of FAITH FAITH FAITH (First Things)
              4) Masks are for Cowards who live in Fear of Death (First Things)
              5) ALL FAKE NEWS! LIBRUL MEDIA HOAX!
              6) NO GUBMINT’S GONNA TELL MEEEEE WHAT TO DO!!!! FREEDOM!!!!
              7) I THOUGHT I LIVED IN A FREE COUNTRY!!!!!! BOOGALOO!!!!!

            • Dan,

              What is your specific field again?

    • Robert F says

      Dan, the anti-mask people are not just foolish, they are in the grip of defiance culture. If cancel culture is part of progressive mentality and strategy today, defiance culture its counterpart on the right.

      • What the blazes is “cancel culture” anyways?

        • Adam Tauno Williams says

          > “cancel culture” anyways?

          A trope used by right-wing pundits to lay the decline of America at the feet of Internet Slacktivists.

          Once someone cites “cancel culture” you are generally in the clear to stop paying attention.

          • Ok, but what do THEY mean by it?

            • Adam Tauno Williams says

              That if someone says something online that someone doesn’t like then some of those someone’s “cancel” them; unfollow, block, etc…

              I mean, Who Cares? It is such an eye-roll of a thing.

              Or when a speaker shows up somewhere that some people don’t like some of those people protest the speaker. OMG! Can you imagine?

              • Dana Ames says

                It’s not simply a protest. Many of them hound the speaker out of the venue and don’t even allow them to be heard. Some have been physically attacked. It’s not an eye-roll thing if you’re the one being attacked.

                We used to be able to tolerate those with whom we disagree, as you do, Finn. There’s less and less tolerance out there these days in the name of people “feeling safe”. We’re not allowed to teach people, esp college students, how to think, how to evaluate arguments – we’re now supposed to prevent exposure to anything uncomfortable.

                https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/05/the-peril-of-writing-a-provocative-email-at-yale/484418/

                Read the whole article. It’s just one example.

                Dana

                • Robert F says

                  I do agree that canceling can be far more than just getting piled on on social media. It can be weaponized by “sin” sniffers of every ideological stripe, made viral, and ruin lives. I’m not sure what could be done about it, aside from criticizing it, since it is itself a form of free speech. It seems to me that government censorship or regulation of cancel culture would be a cure worse than the disease, to echo our president’s words about anti-coronavirus measures.

                • Adam Tauno Williams says

                  > Many of them hound the speaker out of the venue

                  Yes, it happens. Describing it as anything like pandemic is ridiculous. Also, this has always happened.

                  > We used to be able to tolerate those with whom we disagree

                  Largely we very much still do.

                  Online “engagement” has skewed people’s perception of discourse. The same is true for the kookiness which can afford to exist at elite universities – institutions which, IMNSHO, have sailed past their sell-by date – it isn’t like there is not an abundance of other venues.

                  I witness tense-but-productive engagement all the time.

                • Robert F says

                  The working principle behind canceling is boycott. I recently read that a number of conservative groups were trying to get a movie to cancel a film in which an actress or model would play the role of Jesus. Boycott is an essential expression of free speech; it may be deployed ethically or unethically, but it cannot be prohibited.

                  • Headless Unicorn Guy says

                    I understand searching on “christian boycott” will give you MILLIONS of hits.

          • Headless Unicorn Guy says

            Once someone cites “cancel culture” you are generally in the clear to stop paying attention.

            According to Professor Fea’s transcript of Friday’s Prayer & Worship Spectacular at Mount Rushmore, “Cancel Culture” is now a verse in the Book of Trump.

    • Dan, please quote the “lie” told by Dr. Fauci.

      • Ted google it He admits it , not hard to find

        • You seem reluctant to actually back up your own claim yourself. You make the claim, you provide the evidence.

        • Dan from Georgia says

          You can Google ANYTHING and find content on what you Googled. Takes discernment to weed out the garbage from the truth.

        • Dan, so you won’t tell me the quote, or you can’t? I don’t know what you’d like me to google. Please copy and paste it. Thank you.

      • Mike Bell says

        “Well, the reason for that is that we were concerned the public health community, and many people were saying this, were concerned that it was at a time when personal protective equipment, including the N95 masks and the surgical masks, were in very short supply. And we wanted to make sure that the people namely, the health care workers, who were brave enough to put themselves in a harm way, to take care of people who you know were infected with the coronavirus and the danger of them getting infected.” https://www.thestreet.com/video/dr-fauci-masks-changing-directive-coronavirus

        I interpret that as Fauci was intentionally misleading people to save PPE for the frontline workers.

        • Robert F says

          I’m not sure that’s the only way to interpret it. When Fauci and his people changed the directive with regard to public mask wearing, there were still shortages of medical PPE, including masks. At least, that’s what I remember. If that’s true, then something else must’ve happened to change their minds. One of the things that may have been new is that they were now saying you could make your own masks, that home-made masks had a level of effectiveness that would help in containing spread. That was new, and would obviously decrease some of the risk of shortages for medical personnel from public mask wearing.

    • Rick Ro. says

      I want to know if this Dan (big D Dan) is the same Dan as “dan” (little D dan).

    • Clay Crouch says

      Is this Dan or dan? Or are they one in the same? I need scorecard.

      • Headless Unicorn Guy says

        And are they 50centers on Putin’s Payroll?
        Dezinformatzia, Tovarichi.

    • Rick Ro. says

      –> “The lie told by Dr. Fauci at the beginning of this did terrible harm . It weakened trust in his advice and gave the foolish anti mask people some cover.”

      What, no mention of the POTUS’ lies that have weakened trust in him and have given such mixed signals that his fans insist that they’ll never wear a mask?

  2. Headless Unicorn Guy says
    • Robert F says

      The Deep State wants you to wear a mask, and they’ve even forced the president and his administration to go along with it. But you shouldn’t blame him; he’s doing the best he can, and he continues to furtively signal to us his real attitude by not wearing one himself. We know exactly what he’s saying. First they’ll make us wear masks, and then they’ll come for our guns!

  3. Sorry, but it’s not merely the questionable effectiveness of masks that is the problem. It’s the fact that modelling continues to be a worthless pile of crap. It’s the fact that the endgame keeps changing – let alone the goalposts. Are we trying to prevent anyone from getting covid-19 or to keep hospitals from being flooded? Hospitals aren’t being flooded. And if we don’t keep repeating the mistakes of Gov. Cuomo and killing off our elderly citizens in nursing homes we would have half the death count we do.

    And then there’s the inconsistency and hypocrisy of encouraging people to get out and protest (as long as it’s politically expedient!) and completely avoid social distancing (and in many pics I saw they weren’t wearing masks).

    The ENTIRE thing is a joke. It’s nonsense.

    I’ll wear a mask inside just to keep the peace. But outside? No. Heck.No.

    We’re all going to get this thing eventually. Keep the high risk people protected. But stop with the games on masks, protests, flattening the curve, et al.

    • “Hospitals aren’t being flooded”

      They were being flooded in the Northeast back in April. They will be flooded in the South and Southwest soon enough.

      • They never reached capacity – even in NYC. And NYC was a case of DeBlasio not taking things seriously until too late. He was almost two weeks behind everyone else in even attempting social distancing.

        • And what’s going on in the Southwest is an example of taking things seriously?

          • you are cherry-picking your data points. California (LA area especially) is essentially still in lockdown and their situation is much worse than the Southwest.

            So lockdowns and masks aren’t helping in places like LA.

            And yes – I’m looking daily at the data from the Southwest and I don’t believe it’s that bad. Georgia was supposed to be an experiment in human sacrifice according to the media. Yeah, not so much.

            The media narrative is red states bad – blue states run by brilliant statesmen.

            But fine – wear a mask. I really don’t care. I’m simply responding to Mike’s question as to why I won’t wear one except in very targeted situations.

            • Radagast says

              Exposures have been lighter here in Pittsburgh… but I have a group of people in El Paso where a lot are infected… whole families. My unscientific opinion is that this will continue until we have a large bit of the population infected (as happens with the flu) or we develop a vaccine. Until then masks help to stem the spread….. but also extend the life of the virus as it keeps coming back to infect thos who either don’t have immunity or have not gotten it yet.

            • You’re misreading the data. CA was loosening restrictions, and had to reimplement them when cases spiked. You can’t blame a lockdown that was never a full lockdown.

              And if the spikes are all occurring in states that defied social distancing and mask wearing, and those states happen to be “red”… Well, if the shoe fits, wear it. You don’t want to be mocked? Don’t act stupid.

              • Robert F says

                In fact most of the states have pushed early reopening, even when they had not met the criteria the state government itself set for going into laxer stages. That was done here in PA, and now things are surging.

              • ah, I had completely forgotten that you were a troll. Silly me.

                Goodbye, troll.

    • What is your criteria for judging the modeling as “crap”?

      • The Imperial College model was the most widely used and was completely incorrect in its forecasts. They predicted that even WITH a lockdown in place the hospitals would be overwhelmed and millions dead.

        The more recent model – the University of Washington model isn’t much better. Turns out that writing models is hard and getting good data is even harder. Which any decent software engineer already knows.

        • That’s two models out of… How many? And where are the sources which show these models were incorrect?

        • Dana Ames says

          This is a “novel” – that means NEW disease. It’s a virus, which can mutate. We should not expect good models, especially when so many people refuse to follow the common-sense precautions, including wearing masks.

          My county has a population of 55,000 people. We have 85 cases, and zero deaths. We had a spike three weeks after graduation parties; before that, it was 35 cases. The vast majority of people are wearing masks, especially at grocery stores and other indoor venues. Seems to be working for us.

          Dana

    • anonymous says

      “The ENTIRE thing is a joke. It’s nonsense.”

      russian troll or trumpist ? y’all crawl out of the same pit

    • Hospitals not flooded? Talk to Dallas and Houston my friend. Check back on that notion the week of July 20th. I’ll bet the picture will be much more dire.

      • Headless Unicorn Guy says

        Hospitals not flooded?

        That is The Party Line.
        All else is FAKE NEWS. LIBRUL MEDIA LIES.

        To quote Eagle’s regular troll, “There are a lot of DISLOYAL Americans.”

    • Michael Z says

      Jeff, here’s my question for you: if there’s even a 1% chance that you wearing a mask in public for the next 6 months would save someone’s life, don’t you think it’s worth it? Masks are hot and uncomfortable and make your ears hurt if you have to wear them for hours at a time, but how much personal discomfort outweighs the value of a human life?

      We rarely find ourselves in situations where our daily actions have such impact on the health and lives of others. That’s a heavy burden of moral responsibility to bear. But is it really any different than the rest of our lives as Christians, where we constantly need to do what’s right instead of what’s easy?

      • I honestly find this type of approach to public policy confounding.

        We know that reducing traffic speeds results in lower deaths. So let’s reduce all speeds to 5 mph. Zero traffic deaths! It will save lives! What’s that? You don’t want to do that? Well then, you must hate people and want them to die. What is extra hours in a car and personal discomfort compared to the value of a human life?

        At the end of the day, the options are rather clear: this is a virus that now appears to have a mortality rate of either .03 to .04% compared to normal influenza of .02%. The difference of course is the transmissibility rate which is significantly higher. But for the VAST majority of people this is not a risk. So let’s triage this accordingly – protect our elderly – especially those in nursing homes (which for the love of God – we’re still not doing properly) and those in high risk categories need to be especially careful.

        Moreover, it’s not six months of inconvenience – it’s likely at LEAST another year – and that’s assuming the virus doesn’t mutate. Which, ironically, is actually what we likely want to happen since that’s how these things tend to burn themselves out. But then the vaccine would be ineffective……and round and round and round we go.

        The societal consequences of everyone wearing masks is also significant. So much of our communication is being able to read facial expressions. I have deaf friends who are incredibly inconvenienced right now – this is extremely painful for them as they cannot read lips.

        The problem as I see it is we make blanket pronouncements using dubious metrics to judge success on a complete hope and prayer. That’s not to say I don’t take this seriously. I will not be attending a stadium full of screaming football or soccer players. Not a chance. I won’t be participating in Christmas choir celebrations (if they even exist). I’m not going to crowd into a mall for shopping.

        But mandating universal wearing of masks outside (I mean, seriously – I see people wearing masks outside when there is literally no one around) is crazy.

        • As we’ve learned more about the virus, it has become clear that mask-wearing and social distancing is especially important in INDOOR public places, where a large number of people are sharing the same air. The risk declines outside. I generally do not wear my mask outside, unless for some reason I’m in a crowd of people (rare these days). But I always wear one in inside public spaces. We’re learning, and these things are being communicated. But I’m afraid people aren’t listening. On the one hand you have the anti-maskers who won’t wear one anywhere, on the other hand you have the overly cautious who wear one everywhere, even when they’re driving or alone in their yard.

          Be smart, and wear a mask when it makes sense.

          • Radagast says

            In my neck of the woods (moderately large metropolitan area: suburbs), a person really stands out if they do not wear a mask in places like Walmart or the grocery store. About a week ago, while waiting for my wife to look for something while in Walmart, I did an unscientific observation of who did not have masks. I found the number to be very low (probably in the low single digits based on the total population in the store) and found it was a mix of races, cultures, and socio-economic status (again based on observation) – hence random.

            Last weekend I took my boys backpacking and noted I did not see much mask wearing when stopping in stores out in the rural areas. Experienced the same when my wife and I took the rural route to Charleston, WV (WV is a beautiful state).

            • I would say the same things about where I live. I am concerned that people have just decided to be done with the coronavirus. It’s not going away and it will be sometime before we have an accessible vaccine. If people don’t take commonsense precautions, then we are in a heap of trouble.

              • Rick Ro. says

                –> “If people don’t take commonsense precautions, then we are in a heap of trouble.

                We are in a heap of trouble, then.

                • Headless Unicorn Guy says

                  There is a commercial on morning drive-time radio that starts out “Coronavirus shows how quick the Government can take your Freedoms away…” and then slides into hawking GOLD! GOLD! GOLD! as a Sure Investment.

        • Rick Ro. says

          –> “So let’s reduce all speeds to 5 mph. Zero traffic deaths! It will save lives!”

          That extreme would be akin to a draconian lockdown saying no one can ever leave their house for any reason. No one is asking us to do that. All that’s being asked is to wear a mask. That’s like asking you to drive 60mph on the freeway. Think of others. Drive safe.

          Even then, there are no guarantees. Sure, wearing a mask might not prevent 100% spread, but if it lowers the spread, it’ll save lives, just like obeying traffic laws does.

          • Clay Crouch says

            Come on, that’s way too reasonable.

          • Adam Tauno Williams says

            As for 5mph – we have data – that’s way lower than necessary to get to near zero deaths.

            Urban areas should – blanket – be regulated to ~20mp/h. “Twenty is plenty!”

            (1) that has almost no impact on trip times, with a uniform speed limit signals and systems can be very efficiently sequenced
            (2) the fatality rate of collisions, including pedestrians, is extremely low.

            It’s science!

        • David Greene says

          At the end of the day, the options are rather clear: this is a virus that now appears to have a mortality rate of either .03 to .04% compared to normal influenza of .02%.

          That just seems to be the biggest pile of nonsense. If one checks the number of deaths verses cases it runs about 4% in the US, that it is only “.03 or .04%” is demonstrably false. To date, in the US, there have been about 2.5 million cases and 125K deaths, anyone can do the math.

          • Michael Bell says

            You could make the argument for 0.5 to 1% mortality rate. “Pile of nonsense” is not exactly the soft response I would have used. I would ask you to back up your number with real data Jeff, but you can’t because real data doesn’t exist to back up your numbers.

            • And what keeps being left out of those numbers is the range of results between death and recovery with no symptoms.

              Being on a vent for a day or weeks can wreak you for years. Or life.

              Even if you don’t wind up on a vent recovery can take weeks to months. And many require rehab.

              And we’re just beginning to figure out how badly this damages internal organs. (No time to autopsy all deaths and do full body scans on the recovered.)

              This might just be primarily a vascular thing and it’s just that the lungs are the most vulnerable to such. Lots of reports of recovery but with reduced function in other organs.

              But the way some folks seem to spin it we should just let it burn through the population then see the results as if it’s a ball score.

          • Clay Crouch says

            Latest US #’s I could find:

            2.74 million confirmed cases
            130,000 deaths
            4.75% mortality rate

            • Headless Unicorn Guy says

              Problem is, “confirmed cases” are from testing and/or hospitalization, and our testing has been screwed up from day one, so the actual cases are higher but how much higher? And COVID has “silent spreaders” who would test positive but show no symptoms or only minor ones (cold or “sniffles”).

              Deaths however are pretty definite, with a minor blur factor as to the requirements to count them as COVID. (Cause of Death often has more than one factor when you count in co-morbidities — did they die OF COVID or WITH COVID?)

              What I don’t understand is why nobody collates HOSPITALIZATION numbers, only “confirmed cases” and deaths. That would provide an important number in between those two, as symptoms/test results lag 1-2 weeks from infection, hospitalization about a week after that, and deaths 1-2 additional weeks. If all the figures were collated, you’d probably see a “bulge” go down the various metrics — first whatever caused the spreading event, then “confirmed cases”, then hospitalizations, then deaths — with one to two weeks’ delay between each.

        • Michael Z says

          > this is a virus that now appears to have a mortality rate of either .03 to .04% compared to normal influenza of .02%

          You’re off by an order of magnitude. Last year, for example, the CDC estimates the flu infected about 39-56M people and killed about 24-62k, for a mortality rate of about 0.09%:

          https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/burden/preliminary-in-season-estimates.htm

          Current estimates for covid-19’s mortality rate range between about 0.5% and 1%, i.e. 5-10 times deadlier than the flu:

          https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-01738-2

          Add that to the fact that because it’s so contagious it could infect a far higher percentage of our population than the flu, and we could easily be looking at a million deaths in a worst-case scenario with no action taken to mitigate the pandemic. We’ve *already* seen 130k deaths in 4 months, more than twice as high as the CDC’s upper-bound estimate for annual flu fatalities for any year in the last ten years:

          https://www.cdc.gov/flu/about/burden/index.html

          That 130k is with essentially only the Northeast and a few other hotspots infected, *and* with drastic actions taken to reduce the spread. And, it’s likely an under-estimate. Multiply the deaths in the Northeast by the percent of the US population they represent and, again, a million deaths seems totally possible.

          • Headless Unicorn Guy says

            I’m thinking two million dead, if we use the proportions of the 1918 flu.

            “FREEDOM! MAGA!”

      • i did post a reply – appears to have not gone through or was deleted. Oh well.

        • Radagast says

          Sometimes things get stuck in moderation and if CM is away it may not be released for a while…. be patient and you will see it appear….

    • Adam Tauno Williams says

      > Hospitals aren’t being flooded

      FALSE

      ICU’s in three Florida hospitals are full, with 82% ICU bed occupancy in Southwest Florida.

      • Rick Ro. says

        Yep.

        And all one has to do is chat with an ER aide at any place, they’ll tell you it’s getting bad.

        Here in WA State, when we were “ground zero,” I periodically texted a friend who worked with those who work in ERs. He can attest to the dangerous limits we were beginning to reach until shelter-in-place began. I’ll text him soon to see if he’s seen an uptick yet.

        • And all one has to do is chat with an ER aide at any place, they’ll tell you it’s getting bad.

          The problem with this being political is these YouTube videos keep appearing with a single (self proclaimed) nurse saying “It ain’t so” and thus the anti maskers use that as PROOF IT IS ALL A LIE.

          • Headless Unicorn Guy says

            And all others than that “single (self-proclaimed) nurse” that say “It IS So” are ALL Crisis Actors on the payroll of the Librul Deep State. (Just like the “parents” at Sandy Hook.) And the Lord and Master of the Deep State is either the shape-shifting cannibal lizards from the planet Draco — or SATAN Himself.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      “Hospitals aren’t being flooded”

      That is now The Party Line.
      And if we don’t test, we won’t have as many cases. VICTORY!

      • Christiane says

        I’m still reeling over Trump’s “if we don’t test, we won’t have as many cases” line.

        Almost as sick as claiming ‘it’s going to disappear’

        It is said that even with all of the ‘crazy’ and all of the Russia thing, the majority of white evangelicals are still voting for T

        WHAT are they witnessing to?
        WHAT do they hope to gain?

        ?

        • “WHAT are they witnessing to?”

          The preservation of “Judeo-Christian/Western ‘America'”, as defined and controlled by them, of course.

          “WHAT do they hope to gain?”

          Abortion made illegal, marriage made solely for one man and one woman, and free reign given to the police and CBP/ICE to keep the “criminals” and “illegals” in line.

          Whether any of these things are necessitated or defensible from a Christ-ian standpoint, I leave as an exercise for the reader.

        • Headless Unicorn Guy says

          The Victory Celebration kicks off tonight at Mount Rushmore.
          First day of Trump Adoration Weekend.

    • Robert F says

      >”Keep the high risk people protected.”

      To do that would require an expansive and expensive federal program that would serve as safety net for the loss of income those in high-risk groups could not afford, and it would have to include healthcare. The same anti-maskers who are defying or resenting requirements to wear masks would raise holy hell about such a program, calling it socialistic nanny-state-ism. So which would you prefer: the minor inconvenience of having to wear masks when away from your home, or a massive government program paid via taxation to protect those at high risk? If you’re down with the latter, as someone in the high-risk category I willl happily stay at home; if not, keep your mask on in public and stop whining about it.

  4. Robert F says

    “I haven’t worn one yet, and I won’t.” One Christian blogger said this yesterday in a Tweet. Fortunately, he doesn’t have many followers. Defiance culture rather than Christianity seems to direct his attitude and behavior in this matter, and I would guess in others as well, since this kind of thing is not born in isolation. I don’t think people with this mentality are open to correction, in this or anything else.

    • Michael Z says

      When you’re a kid, authority figures in your life are always telling you to do or not do things, and if they’re inconvenient or difficult you will often try to get away with not doing them, because you don’t understand enough to be able to decide for yourself what is important to do. Part of growing up is reaching a point where you do unpleasant things (like going to the dentist) voluntarily because you understand the need for them.

      I’m helping out part-time in a homeless shelter right now, and we deal with a lot of people who were never really successful in making that transition to an adult way of living in the world. Not surprisingly, getting them to wear masks is very difficult, and like little kids they’ll try to get away with breaking the rules whenever you aren’t looking. The resistance becomes even stronger when a person is also operating on “playground masculinity” that’s all about looking tough and being reckless, rather than adult masculinity.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      Defiance culture rather than Christianity seems to direct his attitude and behavior in this matter,

      These days, Defiance Culture IS Christianity.
      God or SATAN — Whose Side Are You On?????

      • Christiane says

        “You can safely assume that you’ve created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.” (Anne Lamott)

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      “I haven’t worn one yet, and I won’t.” One Christian blogger said this yesterday in a Tweet.

      Why does this not surprise me?
      Today’s American Christianity IS Defiance Culture.
      “WHOSE SIDE ARE YOU ON????????”

  5. Christiane says

    Is it not a denominational preference also, as that whole choir in Texas that SANG in front of the VP were unmasked . . . that’s a lot of people in a church ignoring ALL the ‘warnings’

    as though the Angel of Death would ‘pass over’ them ??

    am trying to sort out what the thinking is, but am having trouble doing it

    is it all politically-motivated?

    ‘defiance culture’? some strange reaching for ‘freedom’ from all responsibility for ‘our neigbor’?
    but what does that turn people into but selfish beings or corpses?

    spreading germs knowingly . . . isn’t there a law against it somewhere ?
    with this virus raging, we are all of us potential carriers and a carrier may infect others but not personally show symptoms . . . . . how can we anticipate the need for some kind of ‘voluntary’ cooperation turning into a national mandate to take suggestion precautions in order to stop the slaughter of the most vulnerable?

    • “what does that turn people into but selfish beings or corpses?”

      They’ve been taught in the church to distrust anything that can nflucts with what the church (i.e. their leaders) say. They’ve been taught on radio and TV that Big Gubmint is out to get them. They were taught in school that America is a Christian nation, the greatest nation on Earth. And they were never taught how to think for themselves.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      as though the Angel of Death would ‘pass over’ them ??

      They’re Under the Blood/Protected by the Holy Spirit/Their FAITH Is Genuine/you name it.

      how can we anticipate the need for some kind of ‘voluntary’ cooperation turning into a national mandate to take suggestion precautions in order to stop the slaughter of the most vulnerable?

      Speaking of “slaughter of the most vulnerable”, do you remember the Governor of Texas ( strong CHRISTIAN) and how it’s the duty of old geezers to get infected and die so as to preserve the Economy for the young? Plus what I’ve been hearing on social media that “they’ve already lived longer than average” and Sweden treating its nursing-home cases with “palliative cocktails” of painkillers and tranquilizers instead of supplemental oxygen.

      • Believe nothing on social media unless it can be corroborated on other sources.

        • Christiane says

          it’s that dreadful horror movie that misrepresented Sweden’s care for the aged:
          “Midsommar”

      • Fact check.

        I think you meant the Lt. Governor. He the the governor seem to be diverging on their ideas of how to deal with this. Gov Abbot made masks mandatory in most of the state.

        • Headless Unicorn Guy says

          Governor or Lt Governor, he was still speaking from the pulpit of Officialdom.

          And it wouldn’t be the first time a Gov and Lt Gov were butting heads. During the First Coming of Governor Moonbeam out here, he had a Lt Gov from the other party; every time Moonbeam was out of the state running for Prez, his Lt Gov (Acting Governor when the Governor was out-of-state) would start issuing Executive Orders countermanding Moonbeam’s Executive Orders.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      Is it not a denominational preference also, as that whole choir in Texas that SANG in front of the VP were unmasked . . . that’s a lot of people in a church ignoring ALL the ‘warnings’

      Not a church — a Texas MEGA whose Lead Pastor/Superapostle is Jeffress the Flatterer.

      Were they singing the hymn “Make America Great Again” (an actual hymn at that “church”, written by the Lead Pastor/Superapostle)?

      The whole event was Jeffress once more sucking up to Caesar for a seat at Caesar’s right hand. Another cocker spaniels yap-yap-yapping his LOYALTY, LOYALTY, LOYALTY.

  6. Another quirk is many localities are mandating masks, but the business owner/manager is responsible for enforcement. In the case of the small business retail owner, the owner is responsible for enforcement. For a big box retailer, it is put in the hands of the door greeter, usually making minimum wage.

    This goes against the American mindset of “The customer is always right”. For the small business owner, that customer she is offending may be a big percentage of their income. For the big box door greet making minimum wage, is it worth a fight with a Karen who earns 10 times their income. We have put retail enforcers in impossible situations.

    I would rather use the handicap parking model where un-armed officers write citations, but that takes a level of training and staffing local cities don’t want to undertake.

    • Or just don’t have the money and/or warm bodies to implement.

    • Adam Tauno Williams says

      >We have put retail enforcers in impossible situations.

      Yep.

      > level of training and staffing local cities don’t want to undertake.

      Cannot afford. Enforcement is always the most expensive possible solution to any problem.

      • Radagast says

        … and with the defund the police movement going on….

        Had a very spirited conversation about that very subject with my 22 year old daughter, sometimes its good to hear young people’s opinions… but that conversation is for another thread….

        • If police unions and departments refuse to reform themselves, more drastic action is required. Call it “restructuring”, “defunding”, whatever. But if the cops won’t kick out the abusers and alt-righters, someone else must do it for them.

          • Adam Tauno Williams says

            Yep, I am all for de-funding my city’s police department.

            We can do better for less money. Really, that is barely a challenge. The police are both expensive and wildly ineffective.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      Another quirk is many localities are mandating masks, but the business owner/manager is responsible for enforcement.

      And his workers get harassed if not physically assaulted (including deliberately coughed on — “DON’T TREAD ON ME! FREEDOM!”). Just last weekend, an iconic local taco-stand chain in the San Fernando Valley had to close because of harassment and assaults when they tried to enforce their “No Mask, No Come In” rule.

      Eagle reprinted the news coverage over at https://wonderingeagle.wordpress.com/2020/06/30/los-angeles-times-editorial-united-we-stand-divided-we-fall-to-the-coronavirus/#more-25704

  7. Some churches are attempting to have both worlds. They have one service where “masks are required” with a second service “masks optional”. Staff are at both. What good does that do?

    Also, they demand having choirs and praise bands. Can’t they take a break and just have the Word with possible instrumental music? Can’t we take a break from praise bands and choirs for a few months?

    • Because, in many circumstances, you’re not dealing with a church that has a choir/praise band; you’re dealing with a choir/praise band that has a church.

    • Radagast says

      In my own Catholic segment of the world, many or the congregants are older, practice social distancing, and wear masks… ie responsible behavior. I wear a mask everywhere I go not for me but for others. But i agree with the minority on this site… you can’t have it both ways. You can’t complain about church attendance and then say that protesting has no impact on COVID spread. I had this discussion with a couple I run with who actually painted church goers as the bad guys while also stating it is people’s right to protest…. amazing.

      • “you can’t have it both ways. You can’t complain about church attendance and then say that protesting has no impact on COVID spread.”

        Yes we can, because they are apples and oranges. The protesters are outdoors, and the vast majority are masked. Churches are indoor venues, mostly with poor ventilation, and many church activities (singing, responsive reading, etc) are almost tailor made to spread bugs like COVID.

        • Radagast says

          Eeyore,

          I can only go by my observations. In my community and also since I am part of the organization trying to figure out this COVID thing for our parish grouping this is what I see:

          In Church: Every other row blocked off, non-families at least six feet apart, masks. Communion given based on guidelines (disinfectant etc) – responsible gathering.

          What I have seen on TV when it comes to protesting – people in close groups, not spread out, some people not wearing masks, loud chanting which causes the projectile spread from the mouth (kind of like choral singing in a church).

          So yes – one should see that it is a hypocritical opinion to state one is bad while the other is good. I can understand if one says both are bad….

          • “As the U.S. begins to open back up, coronavirus clusters — where multiple people contract COVID-19 at the same event or location — are popping up all over the country. And despite drawing massive crowds, protests against police violence and racial injustice in Washington state weren’t among those clusters.”

            https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/06/24/883017035/what-contact-tracing-may-tell-about-cluster-spread-of-the-coronavirus

            • Radagast says

              But there is no evidence either that those attending religious services responsibly are contracting COVID-19.- I am talking from my experience in a Catholic Mass. I do not know what they are doing in non-denomination Mega-churches.

              I would suspect, with the close proximity of people in protest groups, and a percentage of those attending not wearing masks, we will see some rate of infection eventually. If not then it says something else we need to pay attention to.

              Lastly – although I do enjoy the reporting from NPR, I also understand there is a bias. A quick look at the articles that exist about this topic show most are not coming from neutral scientific journals. That does not mean it may not be true, it is just an observation.

              • But NPR’s bias is far less likely to deny basic reality.

              • I saw a lot of masks at the protests, including those worn by my own children who participated. But those who didn’t wear masks or distance themselves represent something that we know as a fact: that younger people are much less compliant with the pandemic guidelines than older people. Younger people also tend to be asymptomatic or to get only mild cases. So the threat is primarily that they will become super spreaders to more vulnerable people.

              • “I am talking from my experience in a Catholic Mass. I do not know what they are doing in non-denomination Mega-churches.”

                That is the difference. In my area Catholic and mainlines have spent a lot of time thinking about it responsibly. For example, our church has no choir, praise team, or singing. Evangelical churches, not so much.

              • Clay Crouch says

                Would you direct us to a news organization that doesn’t have a bias?

          • Article on protest risks of COVID holding in moderation.

            • Headless Unicorn Guy says

              Latest news is that the spreader outbreaks are more from parties and bars than protests. That Memorial Day crows and get-togethers were the initial kickoff. Outdoors lets any viral plumes get diluted and lowers the chances; indoors with A/C constantly recirculating air (and any contaminants) ups the chances. Recirculating A/C is a factor in the Fake News(TM) that the infection rate is NOT going down with hot weather.

              My writing partner’s church has a 1950s-vintage A/C which does NOT recirculate, with all intakes from outside air and exhaust fans in the ceiling. He said this was usual for A/Cs of that vintage “when everybody smoked”.

              • Robert F says

                Most AC now recirculates to conserve energy. This is a big problem for coronavirus.

      • Headless Unicorn Guy says

        In my own Catholic segment of the world, many or the congregants are older, practice social distancing, and wear masks… ie responsible behavior.

        That’s because they’re Apostate Romish Papists(TM), NOT Real True Christians(TM).

        The RTCs (i.e. “Christian” without any qualifiers) seem Hell-bent on getting and staying on the wrong side of this.

  8. Michael Z says

    For comparison, just look at how angry people got about seatbelt laws back in the 80s. Even here in “liberal” Massachusetts, the pushback against a law requiring seatbelts was so severe that they actually ended up rolling back the law. And that was for a safety device that had a well-proven track record, and where it’s easy to understand why it works.

    Masks are even tougher because it’s harder to quantify how effective they are, and because the main reason to wear them is to protect others, not yourself. “If we all do this, the virus will not spread as quickly or as widely in our community, and that will benefit each of us” is a more complex argument, and requires more complex reasoning, than “if you do this, it will protect your own life.”

    • Radagast says

      Seatbelts? … maybe that explains that frequent beeping I keep hearing while I am driving….

    • Rick Ro. says

      I’ve been trying to come up with the right analogy for the mask wearing thing, too, and while at one time I also thought “seat belts,” I’ve since changed it to “reckless driving.” While seat belts works on the surface, it doesn’t quite align because seat belts are more specifically to prevent injury to oneself.

      Reckless driving, on the other hand, will involve the safety of others. If you decide that you don’t like driving 20mph through a school zone while kids are walking, and that… heck with anyone telling ME what to do… drive on through at 35mph, you’re endangering OTHERS. Sure, you can decide red lights aren’t your thing, the government is just trying to force you to stop HERE and to slow you down in getting THERE, but blowing through a red light will endanger OTHERS. Speed limits, traffic lights, stop signs… they all exist to prevent people from endangering each other.

      Same with masks. If you follow traffic laws and guidelines, wear a mask.

  9. Does anyone have a perspective on whether or not this day and time are extraordinary? The levels of resistance, stridency and seemingly pure stupidity seem beyond compare. It seems like a unique phenomenon. Certainly it has been slowly building but perhaps with Trump as a frontman it has become a widespread cultural phenomenon like we’ve never seen. Without getting too far ahead of myself it’s beginning to remind me of 2 Thess 2:11 – “Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false”. This wave of insanity seems to be on a scale unseen. Perhaps a student of history could aid me and tell me not to panic, that this is nothing new.

    • Adam Tauno Williams says

      > whether or not this day and time are extraordinary

      I’m with not. I can remember the Satanic Panic, etc…

      We’ve gotten more effective at being divided, but the culture I recall from my high-school was no less seething with division, animosity, and grievance.

      Today a small faction of very angry people can be extremely loud. What I see around me is a society rapidly adapting to insulate itself from those people, almost like an immune response. That process involves inflammation, but is moving towards a resolution.

    • Radagast says

      The mid to late 1960s all over again….

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      Does anyone have a perspective on whether or not this day and time are extraordinary?

      Depends.
      Are you marking up those End Times Prophecy charts?

      2 Thess 2:11 – “Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false”.

      Which is usually quoted followed by “Tsk. Tsk.”
      And only applied to explaining away why people during the Tribulation don’t see anything out of the ordinary as they worship The Beast and the plagues go down trumpet-by-trumpet, thunder-by-thunder, scroll-by-scroll.
      By Christians who act exactly like the Beast Worshippers when it comes to Pastor Superapostle and Trump.

    • ” Without getting too far ahead of myself it’s beginning to remind me of 2 Thess 2:11 – “Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false”. ”

      I’ve thought of that verse quite often since 2016.

    • ChrisS.,

      I wonder if social media / 24/7 news has made this an extraordinary event in history. The quick access to news and ability to post our opinions and react to them seems to have everyone on edge.

      • anonymous says

        OR create a ‘lulling’ effect with ‘overdose of shock jock/ FOX news/ conspiracy theorists

        after a while, you get to pick your own conspiracy to wrap up in and avoid being ‘woke’d

        its call DISTRACTION especially when the bombs drop about Putin’s people paying bounties on our soldiers heads

        • Information overload. Good points and very troubling. I think I will take a break this weekend and watch the squirrels and birds in the backyard.

          • Headless Unicorn Guy says

            Regarding Information Overload, I once had a used book about political decision making (in a Cold War Nuclear context) that stated when you’re in Information Overload, you start taking a chainsaw to the info-flood to the point you chop out enough that you CAN handle it (even to the point of “one page, no big words, and lots of pictures”) And then make your decision (and take action) with whatever’s left.

            Not knowing or caring whether some of the info you chopped out to get it down to your brain’s size was actually Vital.

            • Thus it is important to be discerning regardless of IQ. More specifically… to be humble enough to recognize others my know more than me about certain things.

              “A man’s got to know his limitations.“

              – Harry Callahan

              • Headless Unicorn Guy says

                Unfortunately in Christianese, “Discernment” has come to mean only Witch-Sniffing and seeing DEMONS! under every bed.

                I refer you to Screwtape’s epistle on Semantics.
                Specifically “Redefinition of The Enemy’s words into their ‘diabolical meanings’.”

                • Well that’s true, sadly. I mean “discernment “ in the best sense of the word. IMO it’s a combination of common sense and humility, combined listening to those who are more educated and/or more experienced in any particular subject.

                  I don’t speak Christianese and don’t trust anyone who does.

                  • Headless Unicorn Guy says

                    I’ve actually become allergic to Christianese.
                    There’s a 60-something “Done” over at Wartburg Watch named “Max” who was a cradle Baptist; grew up and adult life in the Bubble. Christianese is his native language even after he went over the wall (after 50-60 years) and it keeps driving me UP the walls. What he’s trying to say (which is legitimate) keeps coming across as Christianese Code Words, meaningless to those outside of the Bubble. Christianese became such an Mystery Language for the Inner Ring it became meaningless to the mainstream.

                    • “which is legitimate“

                      Funny that you point that out because after I wrote my comment I was reminded that those in the Bubble can’t help but speak what they know. And those of us who are outside the Bubble can try to interpret the Christianese and try to get to the real meaning of what is being communicated.

                      You do good work helping us think things through, HUG. AND with a great sense of humor.

                    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

                      I was reminded that those in the Bubble can’t help but speak what they know.

                      Yes. That’s where Max is coming from.
                      But it still drives me up the crazy tree.

    • David Greene says

      Does anyone have a perspective on whether or not this day and time are extraordinary? The levels of resistance, stridency and seemingly pure stupidity seem beyond compare. It seems like a unique phenomenon.

      The craziness has always been around. I just finished reading Richard Hofstadter’s 1964 essay “The Paranoid Style in American Politics” and this has been around a long time since the 18th century. The focus of paranoia often changes: the Illuminati, the Freemasons, the Commies, the Muslims, the Deep State – and sometimes they get recycled. The difference this time is that it now seems that the crazies are running the asylum.

      • Headless Unicorn Guy says

        A lot of that is due to Internet and Social Media making communication quicker and easier.

        The crazies can also link up nationwide/worldwide and achieve critical mass.

        And a flash mob (like the G.I.Joe cosplayers at the Michigan State Capitol) is only one Twitter Tweet or Viral Video away.

        • Thank you all for your input. I’ve really been wondering!

        • Robert F says

          The internet does spread craziness faster than it could ever have spread before, and forms communities centered on the craziness that are very unwilling to give it up even in the light of counter-evidence.

          • Headless Unicorn Guy says

            That’s because the internet spreads ANY information faster than it could ever have spread before.

            ANY information — the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.

  10. I think much of the problem is that people think the primary purpose of the mask is to protect us from other people but the primary purpose is to protect other people from us. The most people I see without masks here are twenty somethings who have been told they are in the lowest risk demographic. There is almost no consciousness that they can be a risk to other people.

    The greatest healthcare crisis in a century and we put the morons in charge! How can we escape our fate?. Elections matter. Do I need to remind anyone that one is coming up? Choose wisely folks. Your life may depend on it.

    • flatrocker says

      > “Elections matter. Do I need to remind anyone that one is coming up? Choose wisely folks. Your life may depend on it.”

      Trading one brand of insanity for another.
      With all due respect, my life doesn’t “depend” on any of it.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      Do I need to remind anyone that one is coming up?

      If it isn’t “temporarily postponed” to Save Us from The Deep State and Disloyal “Americans”.

      “President for Life… We really need to try that here.”

  11. I think that part of the problem is that people are used to seeing the results of scientific inquiry, not the process of the inquiry itself. In other words: the sausage being made. This is true even of people who are reasonably scientifically literate. Yes, we are taught that science progresses, but the version of this progress that makes it into the textbooks is cleaned up. One day Isaac Newton has a flash of insight. A couple of centuries later, Einstein has another flash. We don’t see the fits and starts and strolls down the wrong path. But in the case of Covid-19, this is all front and center. It is a crash program, interacting with the news cycle. It ain’t pretty.

    By way of analogy, I have been working on a project of short pieces on the background to various baseball vocabulary items. It is great fun. For about half a day I am obsessively interested in the history of some term, such as “fielder’s choice.” I start with just a general sense of its history and go tracing it down various paths. Along the way I have various hypotheses–the fancy word for educated guesses. Some pan other. Others do no. Sometimes I am surprised by which is which. Then at the end I have a body of evidence which I synthesize down to around 500 to 1000 words. With those 500 to 1000 words I look really smart. But if I were publishing my hypotheses as they came and went, I would look like an idiot.

    Oh, and if someone regarded the results–any results–as essentially religious dogma, I would look wildly hypocritical, changing my story every step of the way. But this is the difference between research and dogma.

  12. David Greene says

    “Just google Fauci lied mask , he lied on purpose and admitted it.”

    OMG! Google is the font of all truth!!! Seriously, it seems to me the cant from the RR is shifting from “it’s a Hoax” to throwing shade on Dr. Fauci who now needs a security detail due to threat on his life.

    But early on face masks were naturally looked on as potential protective equipment to prevent catching the virus, that turned out to be only marginally effective. Now we know that masks are really, really good at preventing transmission of the virus, in other words they are prophylactic rather than protective. So there was no lie, only more knowledge.

    • Robert F says

      I remember Fauci having to correct the actual, habitual, compulsive liar beside him during most of the coronavirus White House press briefings, and even though in those cases it would have been justifiable to use that word, he himself didn’t use it. It shouldn’t be used of him.

  13. Rick Ro. says

    Heck, even the governor of the great state of Texas is now saying masks are mandatory. It would be nice if people would see the light before getting all nutty about it.

    • I must confess that I was anti-mask very early on in this pandemic. I can’t really explain it except that, perhaps by seeing people wearing masks, I was reminded of the fear that this thing could get really bad. After the positive results of the first shut down, I’ve done a 180 on masks. I see that every little thing we can do to stop the spread benefits my neighbor.

      I’m not sure why Governor Inslee was heckled off the stage in Tri-Cities except for fear. Hopefully those who are \against masks will see the long term benefit.

  14. Why are some folks so totally teed off about all of this.

    Just from some of my relatives on FB.

    The USA may cease to exist as a nation after the November election.

    It’s Not About Masks or Health– It’s About POWER (a YouTube video)

    The goal of the D’s after winning the election is to turn the country into a communist socialist state that will confiscate all your guns…

    And on and on and on …

  15. Burro (Mule) says

    If we are making face masks into a political statement at this juncture, we’re stupider than even I thought possible. And I was willing to give Trump the benefit of [considerable] doubt until about two weeks ago.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      We ARE stupider than even you thought possible.

      According to a survey I read over the weekend, Political Party Affiliation is THE biggest indicator of attitude and approach to Masks and COVID in general. And Christians have Taken The Mark of one of those Parties – on both forehead AND right hand.

      “Stupidity is like Hydrogen — it’s the basic building block of the Universe.”
      — attr to Frank Zappa

  16. Robert F says

    Well, we flattened the curve for a couple months. Now the curve is going to flatten us. Wear your masks and say your prayers.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      Because the national-level policy we have in place (genuflect and burn the pinch of incense to the God Don), is “SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST! EVERY MAN FOR HIMSELF!!!!!”

  17. Norma Cenva says

    I’m stymied, and it really does beggar the mind on how just a matter of reason, common sense, and self preservation got politicized.

  18. Here is the cdc post about the effectiveness
    of PPE in influenza

    https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/eid/article/26/5/19-0994_article?fbclid=IwAR2V1hPqN0WKb2kXVExP_1UE9ARvru6mtPZvZN0w1jx0S3l3fXLhxMP_bXs

    “In this review, we did not find evidence to support a protective
    effect of personal protective measures or environmental measures in
    reducing influenza transmission.”

    Make of it what you will.

    The real sadness is that the IM blog which used to
    be about the evangelical wilderness is being transformed
    into a left leaning political blog.

    It *is* possible to try so hard at not being a
    fundamentalist that you almost succeed in not being
    christian. I’m looking at you hug… yes, I have been
    reading IM since long before MS passed.

    For those still in the wilderness, google on
    leslie newbiggin and stanley hauerwas.
    They have lots of goo\d material that might
    comfort you.

    jesse

    • Jesse, the evangelical wilderness is smack dab in the middle of politics these days. I hate it too, but that’s the reality.

      And, actually, the point of the post is to encourage us NOT to politicize the matter of wearing masks.

    • And also… Coronaviruses and influenza viruses are not the same. The methods of transmission vary.

    • Robert F says

      Flu and coronavirus are not the same thing. I’m not a doctor or scientist, but it doesn’t seem unlikely that, since they are physically different, the particulars of how they spread is not exactly the same. Different size virus particles, different number of particles required to cause infection, etc.

    • Times change. At this juncture, the Left is closer (not perfect, but closer) to biblical priorities than the Right.

    • Here is an interesting paper:

      “Modelling aerosol transport and virus exposure with numerical simulations in relation to SARS-CoV-2 transmission by inhalation indoors.”

      https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0925753520302630

    • Jesse,

      Of course if bothered to read that particular link you would notice the following:

      1) It was a meta-analysis (they looked at a number of different studies and combined the findings.

      2) Even this meta-analysis has the following qualifier about its analysis on the face mask studies it referenced:

      “Most studies were underpowered because of limited sample size, and some studies also reported suboptimal adherence in the face mask group.”

      IOW, the studies they referenced were not very useful from a rigourous statistically. Which makes them practically useless. But then a Trump leg humper like yourself would probably find all that fancy STEM stuff too hard,

    • Clay Crouch says

      Jesse, what’s wrong with being left leaning?

      • The funny thing is I am not left-leaning (far from it actually), but I call BS on stuff like this when I see it.

  19. Robert F says

    Today I’m reading of the many anti-maskers in Texas. “We don’t live in a communist country,” they say. Not a Christian one either, despite their frequent claims to the contrary.

    • Headless Unicorn Guy says

      They have regressed to the Cold War, specifically the Gospel According to the John Birch Society.

      Which is the GOP strategy for 2020 — “The COMMUNIST Chinese gave us COVID! The COMMUNISTS! The COMMUNISTS! The COMMUNISTS!” (Kind of resembling a Spiritual Warfare sermon with a global string replace.)

      And there was overlap between Chrisitians and Birchers throughout the Cold War.

      Does anyone remember the “American Independent” Third Party?
      AKA the 1968 George Wallace For President Party?
      After Wallace went mainstream Dem and got shot/crippled in ’72, the AIP ran a Bircher Congressman named James Schmitz for President. Though I was in my early teens at the time, I remember a Schmitz-for-President booklet from the local county fair. Over 40 years later, the best description I can give of it from fragmentary memory was “A Political Jack Chick Tract”. The format, illustration style, and TYPOGRAPHY!!!!! was straight out of Jack Chick (a style I later became very familiar with). My most vivid memory of it is a page that must have been near the end of the pamphlet — the “What Should I Do?” ending. The first item on the list was “PRAY!” followed by a Bible verse best resembling Proverbs 15:29 or Psalms 4:3, chapter-and-verse zip code and all.

  20. Here is an interesting paper:

    “Modelling aerosol transport and virus exposure with numerical simulations in relation to SARS-CoV-2 transmission by inhalation indoors.”

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0925753520302630