Inside America’s Mask Tantrum

In this writing journey, I have often felt the need to express myself in unorthodox ways to express my authentic opinions. Writing can often be too formal, inaccessible, or just plain boring. So, I always try to write in a way that will be approachable and conversational, and I feel like I constantly get my point across. I often refrain from cursing or using colloquialisms in my articles for the sake of protecting the integrity of the message. To be honest, I’ve been avoiding writing about COVID-19 because I feel like enough resources are out there already, but here’s the grim reality. We are a few months into the
global pandemic and there are still people refusing to wear masks! There are still people who truly believe the pandemic is a hoax! There are people who do not take precautions seriously! After careful examination of different educated ways to express my feelings on this topic, I decided that the best way to convey my emotions is by saying, WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE?!

We keep seeing those videos of people refusing to wear masks while entering public spaces. We keep hearing the “it’s my constitutional right” or “I have a breathing problem” arguments. We keep witnessing this country become the laughing stock of the rest of the world (well, to be fair we have been that since 2016). It is so frustrating to be at the particular place we are at right now. We keep losing more lives at the hands of COVID-19. Restrictions all across the country continue to affect our quality of life. So what is the reasoning behind America’s affinity of being the capricious child who refuses to follow the rules?

I’ve come to the conclusion that the reasons people refuse to wear masks are just selfishness and ignorance. The people who are not socially distancing, refusing to wear masks, and ignoring precautions are well aware of the danger of their actions, they just don’t care. Early on in our lives, we are taught the difference between right and wrong either by our parents, teachers, or by the media. But this is not a problem of ethics, but rather one of morals. We live in a time where our own often-flawed principles overpower the societal greater good. Simply put, “if I take some action, I might help my community. But if I don’t do anything, I help myself.” When I mention ignorance, not only do I refer to the willful avoidance of the resources available, but also to those who choose to believe a narrative that makes more sense in their world. The internet creates a community that fuels the fires of the ignorant. I mean, even science and informative journalism are often vilified by this country’s “leader.”

So what is there to do at this point? As cliched as it sounds, we start by doing our part. We start by wearing our mask as mandated by our state officials. We start by not creating unsafe environments for ourselves and others such as parties, vacations, or going to bars that are “technically-supposed-to-be-operating-at-50%-capacity-and-as-food-establishments-but-you-see-in-your-friends’-Instagram-stories-that-they-clearly-are-not-following-the-regulations.” I’m looking at you fellow El Pasoans. Call each other out when you note unsafe behaviors. Continue to refuse service to those who don’t care about your health. And for fucks sake, don’t be selfish! Let’s care about each other so we can all dig ourselves out of this one and enjoy some of the upcoming holidays. And remember, if Lady Gaga was able to sing and dance a Chromatica medley while wearing a mask on national television, you can definitely wear yours on a grocery run, Karen.

Whenever you feel like not wearing a mask and endangering others just remember “WWLGD (what would Lady Gaga do).”

Art by Brilloboi
Follow him on Instagram @brilloboi

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