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Use common sense. Masks are not mandatory… yet.

 

I picked up my Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) the other day and the site coordinator told me she was feeling deeply saddened and depressed.

She said, “I can’t wait for this year to be over. I’ve been so depressed that I haven’t been able to socialize or have our community get togethers with our members this year. I can’t even recognize the members because of the masks they are wearing.”

I said, “Take off your mask, Lori. We are only wearing masks because you enforced rules that won’t let us pick up our food without them. Masks are NOT mandatory. And, as soon as I walk away from this pick-up site with my vegetables, I take my mask off and continue on my way.”

She said, “You don’t wear a mask?! You must be a Republican!”

I said, “That’s funny! Politics have nothing to do with it for me. I do NOT wear a mask because I’m an avid health and wellness advocate and researcher, and the science around public masks is not supported for the wellness of the general population. I’ve personally been socializing with family and friends for the past 6 months, all of us are mask-less, and no one in my circle has caught Coronavirus from me or my husband, and we had it back in April.”

She said, “I don’t do any kind of research, I just do what I’m told.”

Her statement floored me.

I’ve never been one to just “do what I’m told” without questioning whether or not it is the truth and/or it resonates deeply within me.

People simply doing what they are told can be a recipe for disaster! When we do that, we lose connection to our own basic common sense and the ability to think critically.

I’ll give you an example.

On more than one occasion while I was walking on a NYC sidewalk, people wearing masks would see me, and step OFF the sidewalk, and step INTO street traffic to avoid me.

They are so afraid of catching this virus that they would step into a busy NYC street, which to me, is shocking.

Yes, the virus is contagious. But, can you catch it by passing me, or anyone else, in the street?

Nope! Not very likely, according to one of the most prestigious medical journals in the world.

The New England Journal of Medicine states, “The chance of catching Covid-19 from a passing interaction in a public space is minimal. In many cases, the desire for widespread masking is a reflexive reaction to anxiety over the pandemic.”[1]

And, even if you by some chance you do catch it, will you die from it?

Probably not.

The risk of dying from Covid 19 if you do NOT have a co-morbidity factor, or you are NOT elderly is extremely slim. There is a 99.5% survival rate for the majority of the population.[2]

I understand emotions are highly charged around this topic.

I was walking mask-less with my dog in Central Park, and four teenage boys were walking ahead of me, also sans masks.

Coming toward them was a woman in her late 40’s or early 50’s, wearing a mask. She pointed her finger at them and yelled loudly, “You are all SELFISH and you should be ashamed of your selves.”

To which one of the young men yelled back, “Go F*&k yourself! We are outside in the F*&k*ng park!

Now… I certainly do NOT agree with teenage boys cursing out a middle-aged woman. That behavior is uncalled for, no matter what she said.

But, I also do NOT agree with public shaming especially, for something that doesn’t make any sense.

I have a box of masks.

In NYC I will not be given service in a grocery store or any other establishment without wearing a mask. So, I put it on to walk into the store, and I take it off when I walk out of the store.

You probably have a box of masks too.

Take a moment to read the warning on the back of your box.

My box says, “This mask should not be placed on young children under the age of 3, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance. This is not a medical-grade mask and is not intended as a replacement for medical-grade personal protective equipment or other recommended measures to stop the community spread of Covid-19.”

Sadly, I have seen babies pushed around in strollers or being carried by their parents wearing face masks. These youngsters are clearly under the age of three.

There’s some coo-coo for cocoa puffs things going on with regards to masks. If you are going to wear one or put one on someone else, please read the warning labels.

And, here’s some basic common sense advice:

  • If you have cold or flu symptoms (sneezing, fever, runny nose, congestion, etc.) don’t go outside and/or interact with family and friends. Stay home, stay in bed, and let your body heal.
  • If you are visiting an elderly family member, wear a mask.
  • If you work in an old-age home or long-care health facility, wear a mask.
  • If you work in a hospital, wear a mask.
  • If you are worried about catching the virus, boost your immune system with medicinal mushrooms and support your health to the best of your ability

Other than that… give yourself some fresh air and freedom before it gets taken away from you.

[1] https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp2006372

[2] https://www.nbc26.com/news/coronavirus/cdc-estimates-covid-19-fatality-rate-including-asymptomatic-cases