The bulk of seniors who are at risk from COVID have either died of the disease, survived the disease or been vaccinated against the disease. New cases are dropping quickly.
Over ten percent of the overall American population has been vaccinated – over 40 million of them – and that figure is increasing at the rate of about 11 million a week. It looks like nearly everyone who wants to be vaccinated will be vaccinated by late spring. Meanwhile, drug treatments have proved increasingly effective. Most recently, the FDA approved a drug cocktail from Eli Lilly.
There will come a time when COVID masks are no longer necessary.
The implicit assumption in that statement is that masks were necessary before. The science is not clear in that regard, but it seems logical that they helped to some degree. The virus seems to be transmitted by airborne particles like microdroplets of sputum. The virus is far too small to be intercepted by a mask, but many of those microdroplets are not.
I comply with the mask rules and will continue to, even though I’ve received both vaccination shots, if for no other reason than they make people around me feel more comfortable. It’s the same reason I try not to fart in the elevator.
But we can’t hold our farts for years. We surely won’t be wearing masks in the year 2023. What about three months from now when COVID will almost certainly be on the wane?
It’s clear that masks will be discontinued, but it’s difficult to see how we get there.
Politicians in this politicized pandemic lack the courage to say, “I’m discontinuing my executive order requiring masks.” Political courage is not exactly in abundant supply these days. CEO’s lack the strength to say, “Enough of this work-from-home crap, I want you in the office where I can see the lights of your eyes, the sweat on your brow and the glints of your teeth. No masks.”
And what about the potential liability? There will still be some small number of COVID deaths for years. Every employer, store and restaurant without a mask mandate, that the deceased visited during the weeks before contracting the disease, will be a potential target for a wrongful death lawsuit.
And, so, we’ll mask-muddle through life long after the masks serve any real purpose, if they ever did. Mask scolds will scold us as they did before and for the same reasons they did before – because they enjoy doing so. In blue states, they’ll require people to wear masks whenever two or more are gathered in His name because they don’t like two or more gathering in His name, or even one. Praying without a mask will be a cancelation offense, as will praying with one.
Here’s the biggest problem. Masks hide people. People in masks are becoming like people in automobiles or on Facebook. In the cloak of anonymity, they feel free to be real jerks. Anger seems on the upswing. It’s not just because of political polarization, but also because people think they can express their anger without been held accountable for it.
Masks also hide facial expressions. Think how often masks have prevented you from effectively communicating with people around you by masking your smile or other visual clues. It’s hard to connect while wearing a mask.
In this brave new world of masked humans, will we be all anger and no love?