According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study published Sept. 11, 85% of COVID-19 patients report having worn a mask “always” or “often.” The study also found that “In the 14 days before illness onset, 71% of case-patients and 74% of control-participants reported always using cloth face coverings or other mask types when in public.”
So that sea of masks in Kroger may not prevent the spread of coronavirus after all.
This study only adds to the growing suspicion that science cannot give us a definitive answer as to whether or not mask-wearing prevents the spread of COVID-19, and that mask mandates are in reality a form of political control.
A report from the National Academies of Sciences published April 8 said there is not enough evidence to say by what percentage masks prevent coronavirus.
In an article from Jordan Schachtel on the CDC report, he cites a tweet from cognitive scientist Mark Changizi, in which Changizi argues that masks actually have negative side effects. Changizi cites a study from the Technical University of Munich that shows that mask wearing can increase rebreathing of expelled carbon dioxide and significantly increase respiration, respiratory rate, and hyperventilation, while also increasing heart rate and carbon dioxide in the blood.
In other words, masks make it harder to breathe. I’m sure everyone has had the experience of feeling lightheaded after an hour or so of wearing a mask; the science only tells us what we already know. Masks, then, are not harmless whether they work or not. So, no, you shouldn’t wear them just to make other people feel safer.
Other studies show that even where mask mandates have been put in place, cases of the virus have not decreased, but have actually increased. Daily cases in San Diego, Los Angeles, Orange, and Ventura counties either continued to increase or spiked after mask mandates were put into place in all four counties. The highest spike for Los Angeles County occurred more than a month after a mask mandate was put in place.
Spreading the mass delusion that masks somehow prevent the spread of COVID-19 only contributes to an environment of fear and isolation. Making someone fearful and isolated does not compute with making them feel safer to me. The tactics of the devil include fear, and the greatest antidote to fear is truth.
The truth is that masks do not only fail to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but also significantly harm human interactions. If I cannot see half of your face, I probably can’t hear you very well or see the emotions on your face. I can’t see you as you, as an entirety of a person.
Peter Hitchens, one of the few patriots left in the United Kingdom, understood the situation rightly when he said, “Face masks turn us into voiceless submissives — and it’s not science forcing us to wear them, it’s politics.”
There is nothing more dismaying than walking into a dining hall that feels like a hospital ward when none of this is necessary. The mainstream culture encourages all of us to avoid conflict and choose “niceness,” or, in the case of the Christian culture here at Hillsdale, some emasculated form of “charity.” When did charity become taking part in a lie?
In June, WHO said its position had evolved and encouraged the general public to wear masks in places where proper social distancing could not be maintained. Now, even in October, masks are still the end-all-be-all of coronavirus prevention such that anyone not wearing a mask is seen as either callous or crazy.
Whether or not the science has changed since March, the right of a person to not wear a mask should be equally protected as the right of someone to wear a mask. To a great extent, the scientific studies on the subject don’t really matter. Law should not change in the face of changing circumstances, for law is the only thing that can protect the people from despotism. If the situation determines the law, then true liberty will not exist. Law must be unaffected by passion, otherwise a tyrant can do anything he wants should the situation “require” it.
Mask wearing is a symbol of the people’s dying desire for true liberty. Our culture values bodily health more than it does political liberty. Exchanging liberty for the hope of bodily health, even the bodily health of your elders, is a deal with the devil. Sacrificing the youth for “public health” is not my idea of American liberty.
Emma Cummins is a senior George Washington Fellow studying politics.