Wear That Mask

Being mandated to wear a mask is not an infringement on personal liberty. This is a public health and community wellbeing issue.

If you would want an example of a contemporary trampling of personal liberties, look no further than being a person of color in America. Objective illustrations of this injustice include stop and frisk, racial profiling, present day incarceration rates of Black males in the United States, gerrymandering, voter suppression, public education, and police brutality/homicide towards people of color.

You wear a seat belt when driving, use condoms to prevent STDs, wear a helmet when you ride a bike, let someone pump your gas in Oregon, and follow traffic laws to avoid hurting yourself or others. Most people find these measures sensible. There is no better example of white privilege than refusing to wear a mask in public, but then turn around and demand a Covid-19 test all while people of color throughout the United States are far less likely to have a testing site available near where they live and are infected at a rate five times that of their white counterparts.

Wear a mask and fight against a real threat to personal liberty: racism.

Matthew Payne, physician assistant