By: Gary J. Groman, a.k.a. The Ole Seagull
The argument will be in bold type with The Ole Seagulls opinion directly following:
1. The science is bad; masking doesn’t help stop the spread COVID-19 from one person to another.
The Mayo Clinic, CDC, WHO, Cox Medical Center, and the Taney County Health Department are among those recommending “the consistent and correct use of face coverings as an important tool for minimizing the spread of COVID-19.”
What little the Ole Seagull knows he knows well but, unfortunately, that is vastly surpassed by what he doesn’t know. When he has to deal with that which he doesn’t know, be it cars, electronics, tv, or medical, he relies on those who know. In the case of COVID-19, he relies on medical and health professionals.
However, let’s say the medical evidence is all wrong; face coverings don’t prevent the spread of COVID-19. Who is hurt by wearing one? On the other hand, if the evidence that face coverings help prevent the spread of COVID-19 is right, how many can be harmed by not wearing one.
2. The cure is worse than the disease. You can eliminate all auto accident deaths by prohibiting people from driving, but we don’t.
We don’t because driving on our highways is an integral part of most of our daily lives. Driving laws and regulations provide a level of safety while driving that drastically reduces the chances of accidents and death. However, they only work if people comply with them. Don’t the vast majority of motor vehicle deaths occur because one or more people failed to comply with the very laws designed to enable safe driving?
It’s the same with COVID-19. Health and safety laws provide a way for people to live their daily lives without a “stay at home order’ or “shutdowns.” While not perfect, mandatory masking is a vital tool in preventing the spread of the disease from one person to another. A tool that, perhaps more than any other, gives people and our economy a chance to function closer to normal amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
3. It will impact on Branson’s economy because tourists won’t come.
For what it matters, an Ole Seagull believes that argument was more viable in the spring and early summer. Not only in terms of the younger people and families coming to Branson but the fact that the benefits of mandatory masking were not as universally accepted as they are now.
This is no longer the case. Major health and medical organizations universally recommend the use of face coverings. More and more major retailers, states, cities, tourist destinations and attractions, are adopting mandatory face coverings. All of which is serves to reduce the likely hood of someone not coming to Branson because of mandatory face covering.
Perhaps the better argument, from a purely economic perspective, should be, “Will tourists not come, if Branson has no provision for mandatory face coverings? Who knows, but either way, Branson could lose potential tourists. The question is, in today’s environment, which will cause the loss of the least!