Twitter user Ben Rosen recently posted the following tweet:
"the government has no business making me wear a mask" i say before i buckle my seatbelt, drive the speed limit to a restaurant built to code, eat food made in a state inspected kitchen, receive the heimlich maneuver from a waiter who learned it from a mandatory workplace poster,
— Ben Rosen (@ben_rosen) July 21, 2020
Someone else said, “Not one of those examples requires me to put something inside or on my body, so they aren’t really relevant or analogous.”
First of all, apparently there are people who exist that think medical masks were literally *designed* to *symbolize* “oppression, separation, and silence.” Medical masks… designed to oppress.
There aren’t enough eyerolls in the world for this level of idiocy.
But, okay, fine. Let’s play this game. Let’s talk about the myriad ways people make themselves uncomfortable or otherwise do shit they don’t want to do that are either demanded by society or mandated in some way, be it by business or government.
We smash our breasts into literal cages because some people can’t handle a little jiggle or the outline of a nipple. Because that would be indecent or unprofessional. If people with boobs can stuff our sensitive flesh into fabric cages on a daily fucking basis because the decency police say we need to do that, you can wear a lightweight fucking piece of fabric over your face to prevent the spread of a deadly disease, Chad.
Interestingly, the seatbelt analogy really isn’t a good one. With seatbelts, only the person not wearing the seatbelt will suffer as a result of their foolish choice. But with masks, the person refusing to wear the mask puts not only themselves in danger, but even more so, they needlessly endanger everyone around them.
Drunk driving is a better analogy. Obviously it would be patently absurd for someone to suggest they have a right to drive to drive drunk because it’s their choice and this is a free country. However, since the deadly consequences of drunk driving are more immediate, it’s easier to see why curtailing someone’s freedom to drive under the influence is an acceptable form of “oppression.” It’s harder with masks because the consequences don’t feel so tangible or immediate. But they exist nonetheless.
A further analogy between mask mandates and drunk driving laws is that a person driving drunk is not guaranteed to kill someone, same as a person wearing a mask is not guaranteed to kill someone. Plenty of drunk drivers never actually kill anyone. The point is, experts calculated the risk that a drunk driver could kill someone and reacted accordingly. Just like experts calculated the risk that a person not wearing a mask could kill someone and reacted accordingly.
“BuT tHoSe WeRe LaWs ThAt wErE pAsSeD.”
Sigh. Well, clearly, Kevin, this is an exceptional fucking situation, requiring us to take exceptional fucking measures. The whole point of mandates and executive orders is to bypass the lengthy legal process for making laws because that takes fucking years, and if we were to wait for “mask laws” to be passed before people finally agreed to wear a mask because they had no choice, millions of people would already be dead. Don’t be intentionally fucking obtuse, Kevin.
Trump actually did invoke the Defense Production Act, which enables the government to compel private enterprise to manufacture goods or services to assist in a national emergency, except the act hasn’t really been needed. That’s because private industry, in one of the most underrated moves in the American coronavirus response, took it upon itself to mandate masks and enforce reduced hours in its factories, stores, restaurants. How’s that for exercising your freedom?
Hey, anti-maskers, you don’t like the government mandating how you comport yourself? Then don’t get mad at business owners making their own choices about how to comport themselves. Businesses have freedoms too, Ashleigh.
Of course, the great mind-bending irony of all these people getting their panties in a wad because the government is mandating that they wear masks is that if they had made the free choice to wear masks in the first place, mandates would not have been necessary.
The government is already tracking us, dingus, and has been for, like, ever.
Several of the responses to the above tweet referenced concern that government mask mandates have something to do with concealing identity. I suspect these are the same folks claiming the government is implanting people with trackers via coronavirus swab tests. These fucking dinguses haven’t figured out yet that the government (and, like, every U.S. company) is literally already tracking us via our smartphones. Oh, and via social security numbers since the Great Depression and via credit cards since those were invented. Imagine being so self-absorbed that you think the government cares about your trips to Walmart and Applebees. To use their own idiotic jargon on them, WAKE UP, SHEEPLE!
There are plenty of things we reluctantly do every damn day that are governed by social etiquette or actual, enforceable law. We vaccinate ourselves and our children because we understand the protective nature of herd immunity even though we hate watching our kids cry as they get a needle stuck in their arm, and that low-grade fever afterwards kind of sucks too. We wear clothes, oftentimes ones that are uncomfortable (see: bras). We stop at stop signs and traffic lights even though we’d rather not stop because we would like to get where we’re going quicker, other people be damned. We don’t bring our pets into grocery stores or restaurants even though we would love to have our furry besties with us at all times. We whisper in libraries even though we’d rather just talk with our regular voice. We wash our hands after using the bathroom even when we are 100% sure we didn’t pee on our hands. We show up on time to meetings even though we know the first 15 minutes of the meeting is going to be smalltalk bullshit and quite frankly there are 100 other things we’d rather be doing.
And, again, if people had simply seen reason and made the compassionate choice to wear a mask from the beginning, not only would mask mandates be unnecessary, but we would have saved thousands of lives.
But hey, what’s a few thousand lives lost as long as you have the freedom not to wear a mask?