[Regarding “County Recommends Return to Masking in Indoor Public Spaces,” Aug. 11, Xpress:] What is the common reason for wearing a mask? COVID circulates through airborne droplets that you breathe. So it makes sense to wear a mask to prevent you from inhaling those droplets. Even if some masks are not as effective as the N95, it still makes sense to gain some internal protection.

Outdoors, virus droplets are carried by the atmosphere, wind, and ultraviolet rays of the sun. So it’s not necessary to wear a mask outside, but many people do. Why? Paranoia/fear. Does this concept still apply today? The answer is: It depends on whether you are vaccinated or not.

If you have not been vaccinated, you should wear a mask indoors to protect yourself. Conversely, if you have been vaccinated, you do not need to wear a mask. Data shows that 90% of people with serious illnesses, hospitalizations and deaths are not vaccinated.

But the government is telling those who are vaccinated that they must wear masks. Why? Paranoia/fear. If you are paranoid and you are afraid of the virus even though you are vaccinated, you are free to wear a mask. But why should the government require people who are not paranoid or fearful to wear masks? Homely. Paranoia and fear overcame common sense.

Of course, there are breakthrough cases when vaccinated people become infected with COVID. …. Why is this the case? Because if the vaccine doesn’t prevent you from getting COVID, it actually prevents you from getting a serious case. So I choose to live a normal life without a mask. Having said that, if I go to a business and they have a sign saying it’s mandatory to wear a mask or they want to see my vaccine tag, I’m happy to comply. After all, they are allowing you to stay at their facility, and we should respect their requests for admission. Also, if I don’t want to wear a mask at someone’s place of business, I can choose not to go in.

Nothing about this has anything to do with politics. It has to do with common sense and courtesy.

– Ed Rothberg

Editor’s Note: The Buncombe County Board of Commissioners voted August 18 to declare a new state of emergency due to the coronavirus, as well as restore masking authority to all indoor public facilities in Asheville, Montreat , Woodfin, Weaverville and unincorporated county areas.


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