Is it possible to stop or substantially control the Coronavirus short of having an effective vaccine? There is no guarantee that scientists will be able to develop a vaccine that will be effective enough to completely eliminate Covid-19.
I am hearing and reading some very smart people saying that if 80% of all people would consistently wear a mask when out in public, we could substantially control the spread of the virus. Or, if everybody would wear a mask for 3 weeks, we could potentially “stop” the spread. On July 17, 2020, the director of the CDC said that the US could get coronavirus under control in one to two months if everyone wears a mask.
Just think about that. Now, I can’t say that this absolutely would work. But if it could work this is perhaps the simplest, cheapest and most readily available solution that we can put to work at this time. Surely this is preferable to enduring another stay-at-home lockdown. We have witnessed that in places where wearing a mask has been accepted for many years, such as Japan, they have seen a much lower incidence of infection. So why don’t we make the effort to “do what it takes” to make this happen?
Well, we know that in the US, this has become an ideological issue aligned with political affiliations. Honestly, in my simple mind, I don’t get that. How do your political views influence your decision to utilize a simple means to protect your health and the health of your family? How does any human being, when told that wearing a mask can help to control and potentially stop the spread, do you then say, “No, I won’t”. Sure, search the internet and you can find “research” that will say that wearing a mask: doesn’t work; is a plot to enslave you; will make you sicker; is a Chinese strategy to topple the US. Honestly, I don’t know what to say to some of those.
If I had a position of power, let’s say, President of the United States, and I was told by scientists that getting everyone or substantially everyone, to wear a mask for a month or two, would curb or even stop the virus spread, I would organize a campaign to bring about a national effort to beat the virus by wearing a mask. I would see this as an opportunity for me to be the guy that will be credited with bringing a solution to the virus and getting our economy back to work. What a huge win politically. How could I not try this?
What’s the alternative? It’s pretty obvious right now that we don’t have a solution. Some states have done a terrific job but we have a patchwork, inconsistent approach. The virus is out of control in many places right now with no end in sight. It would appear our future will continue in the gray fog of semi-locked down living, a crippled economy, travel and leisure businesses all but shut down, massive unemployment and no good solution for schools. We are spending trillions of dollars to battle the virus spread, deal with the sick and support our crippled economy and the unemployed. Bringing an end to the uncontrolled spread could solve most of these problems.
Now, to be sure, this means wearing the mask at all times when in the presence of other people. Any other people. There seems to be a tendency to think that our friends and family pose no risk. But how can you be sure? The fact that they don’t seem to be sick is absolutely no guarantee that they are not infected and cannot infect you. You can be infected, exhibit no symptoms and still transmit the virus to others. There are many stories of families and friends gathering for birthday parties, graduation parties and holiday get togethers and ending up with widespread infection, sickness and death among those attending and others with whom they come into contact.
I don’t have a platform from which to bring this message to enough people to make a difference. Please help by spreading the word through your social media connections, family and friends.
Stop the spread. Put a mask on your head!