To mask or not to mask?

Are we so eager to resume normal activities that we are putting ourselves and others' health at risk
Star Herald Editorial

After months of stay-at-home or stay-safe orders, we are eager to be get back to our normal routines and activities.

Last week our summer routines received a reality check. Some of our youth participating in summer games of baseball recently tested positive for the coronavirus.

As a precaution, youth baseball was halted as we take a step back and assess what this new public enemy will do next.

It appears COVID-19 will not just go away no matter if we turn a blind eye to it or not. It is time to seriously put into place measures that will keep everyone safe while we do our normal activities.

Those measures may include wearing a mask.

So far, 28 states have mandated wearing masks in public. Minnesota is not one of them — yet.

Several Minnesota cities have taken it upon themselves to implement mask wearing, and the Twin Cities airport said everyone has to wear a mask in and around the facility.

Many say mandating the wearing of a mask violates their constitutional rights.

What about the right to safely be out and about our neighborhoods without fear of contracting COVID-19?

We could liken the mask mandates to traffic laws.

Is requiring everyone to wear a seatbelt a violation of our rights, or is wearing a seatbelt just a smart thing to do? After all, we can see that wearing a seat belt helps prevent deaths if the vehicle is involved in an accident.

Unfortunately, like with seatbelt use, some of us will still die. Mask wearing, too, is not going to prevent COVID infections, but maybe we can lessen its impact.

Some of our area businesses have implemented mask  wearing by all employees.

Maybe we as customers need to do the same thing.

Currently the presence of COVID-19 is growing, and we need to do something about it before the virus sends more residents to the hospital.

In Rock County we have not had a reported death from COVID-19, and let’s keep it that way.

Regardless of what our neighboring states or even our own government is considering, maybe we as individuals should consider wearing a mask.

We can be smart about this and concentrate on donning a mask when we group closer than six feet from each other.

If wearing a mask prevents the spread of COVID and enables our businesses to stay open and our youth to continue to enjoy traditional summer activities, then wearing a mask is the smart and responsible thing to do.

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