1/ The question of whether to wear a face mask has become a way to pick sides in what’s quickly becoming a coronavirus culture war. For some, forgoing masks in public during the pandemic has become a political statement.
3/ But pushback has been strong. The decision not to wear a face covering, for some, has become a rebellion against what they see as a government foray on their personal liberties.
12/ Lyle Burk, who works at a meatpacking plant near Amarillo, said: β€œIf I and the people I work with ... can wear face masks for eight hours while making the food you go shopping for, you can wear one for your 30-minute trip to the grocery store.”
5/ In Texas, masks remain optional. Some cities and counties tried to make them mandatory β€” but Gov. Greg Abbott said last month local officials cannot impose penalties on residents who violate rules about wearing masks in public.
6/ And so, public health experts have looked on in dismay at the sight of public places and protests where throngs of people crowd together without protective face gear.
2/ Public health experts have advised the use of masks, especially in public spaces. They say masks help slow the spread of the virus.
13/ Still, the plight of others hasn’t been convincing enough for some. The hardline conservative activist Michael Quinn Sullivan tweeted Wednesday that he would β€œrather drive” than wear a required mask on Southwest Airlines flights next week.
As Texans resume sharing public and sometimes confined spaces, the question of whether to wear a face mask has become a way to pick sides in what’s quickly becoming a coronavirus culture war. From the