Literally everywhere the discussion is not simply about masks (which is most comfortable/matches the colour of my eyes best, etc), but more so those refusing to wear them.
Looking at all the media doing the rounds there are three reoccurring responses for not wearing one:
- denial/couldn’t care less
The God answer doesn’t deny the existence of Covid 19, it simply concludes that only those not devout enough will be left outside God’s protective bubble and catch it.
This theory works wonderfully even if someone close to said believer, who is likewise devout, catches it and dies.
God works in mysterious ways, and while that won’t do much to make up for the grief of losing a loved one, it will go someway to explaining why they went.
After all, suffering someone’s passing and because of it coming to the realisation one’s view of existence is severely wanting would be a bit much.
Especially as their now being in Heaven gives a little solace to the grief.
Despite any inconsistencies (more of which below), God’s position remains intact.
It can be a bit hard to tell what the issue is here. Anger per se can’t be given as the reason for not wearing a mask. It isn’t like offering someone already fuming a hat as they’re raging outside under a likewise sun.
Here the anger only starts when a mask is offered.
Anger tends to carry an insinuation of violence, which might—to some degree at least—be understandable if someone was threatening to throw a tarantula or snake, not offer an item that could save lives.
Anger is the result of fear; anxiety that something isn’t as it should be. Even at its most righteous, any threat or act of force is the result of this.
In some of the footage circulating online incensed people are found threatening doctors and scientists with all sorts of litigation and Godly retribution for suggesting wearing a mask might save lives.
Such is their disbelief they frequently accuse the experts of being frauds despite not having the first qualification in the field in question themselves.
Often, social media points out that mask deniers are found wearing glasses, etc.
But glasses aren’t really a good comparison as they correct something that definitely needs it. Masks are like walking round with an umbrella up all the time just in case it rains (and the rain in question has some drops that are poisonous).
Except, again, that still isn’t quite it as when it does eventually rain it’s the brolly holder who benefits.
Comparisons are hard to make, but when it comes to those in society who really don’t care about breaking the speed limit in areas marked ‘slow: children crossing’ it would likely be a safe assumption to think they’d be found somewhere in this group of non-mask-wearing types.
Noel Gallagher (of Oasis fame) is quoted by NME as saying, “I don’t give a fuck. I choose not to wear one and if I get the virus it’s on me, it’s not on anyone else.”
Not only does the statement thoroughly miss the point of mask wearing, the net was soon flooded with pictures of Noel on a pushbike wearing a cycling helmet.
Anger offers plenty food for thought as it really isn’t necessary for the process of expressing, ‘Actually, I think the government is lying and you’re fool for believing them.’
There’s certainly a trend for not doing something for anyone else, and a bit of an egoistical ‘only weak people get viruses, and, I’m not weak as demonstrated by how f**king angry I am so keep out of my way if you don’t want it,’ in the mix .
And Couldn’t Care Less are lumped together as ultimately they are the same thing.
But as is increasingly the case, all three groups can be found overlapping somehow; godly righteousness equals anger and anger in the face of a free mask (see video below) certainly doesn’t acknowledge the existence of a deadly virus.
Still, some people manage to decline a mask without citing God or threatening to punch anyone and for that they deserve their own mention.
Seeing is believing. The virus can’t be seen, so there is no evidence for it; any images from hospitals are so far removed from the denier’s here and now, anything could be going on there.
This graphic did the rounds, apparently more commonly with this wording.
Personally, and it might just be me, but don’t think ‘in this manner’ is terminology that will speak to mask refusing types.
What’s wrong with a simple and down to earth ‘like this’?
Actually, if I could see CV19 ‘in that manner’, at least I could dodge it and so, in fact, feel safer going out (though I am sort of hoping it wouldn’t actually be this dense in real life).
But it does make the point it couldn’t be denied if looking like this. Talk about God or be angry about it all you want, there it is – get yourself caught up in it, and you’ve got it; so best start praying not too badly or shouting aggressively that it get off.
The power of the unseen:
Is greater than what can be to such degree it can lead to monumental contradictions without the blink on an eye.
Take God: unseen while also all-seeing; the strength of this ‘ability’ only works because God is unseen.
If God could be seen watching, then to some degree at least the mystique behind how He manages to see all of us at once would be revealed. That done, we (some amongst us, at least) would look for ways to make that no longer the case.
And it wouldn’t have to do just with sinful intent.
There’d be plenty of perfectly reasonable times we wouldn’t want God’s eyes prying on us. Apart from anything else it would be positively tedious to look up only to see God’s benevolent face starting back all the time.
But in not being seen, those who believe can conveniently imagine God looking away to save blushes whenever they please.
While there are those using its invisibility to put it firmly under God’s remit, so making it only a problem for sinners (unless God works in mysterious ways – see above), others who accept God as unseen as that’s the way it was when they turned up in the here and now, will see the newness and invisibility of the virus as every reason to dismiss it out of hand.
The other side of the story:
One thing for sure, the behaviour (which has even resulted in someone being killed for trying to implement a mandatory mask requirement; link below) takes all the focus off those who do wear them.
Mask wearers fall into two groups:
- do whatever the government says
- acknowledge the science
What Government Says Goes:
This isn’t to imply this group wear masks begrudgingly, though of course many do, thinking themselves smarter than the average bear by wearing them in such a way they’re on but not actually on to any great impact and they know it.
I think of these types more as the shits bears take in the woods than the bears themselves. Certainly a different breed to the guy I encountered in the supermarket who, lacking a mask but needing groceries, pulled his hoodie up over his face and spent the whole time giggling at his own ingenuity while going about his shopping.
You may have noticed that even governments have been a bit . . . ‘flexible’ when it comes to the what the science actually is. To many this is confusing.
Science (as many think of it) is the sun being in the sky everyday; not maybe it is, maybe it isn’t.
With CV19 we don’t have the benefit of conclusive studies, just calculated guesses, albeit for the most part well educated ones. A recent study, for example, (link below), has concluded a ‘face gaiter’ may pose a greater threat to the wearer.
Elsewhere other evidence suggests that being in close proximity to someone (which would be a distance less than one or two metres depending on where you are in the world) only poses a serious threat if the closeness is maintained for at least fifteen minutes.
Other evidence points towards the virus not posing much of a threat outside at all.
None of these things are certain at the time of writing; there hasn’t been time for the relevant studies and tests to confirm anything (something that will be a major hurdle in getting a vaccine implemented should one be created).
It seems, then, that when it comes to ‘the science’ governments follow the advice that best suits their agendas, whereas science-loving individuals lean towards the most cautious approach on offer (New Zealand’s P.M. Jacinda Ardern being the most science loving of all world leaders, apparently).
After all, what big deal would it be if in an imaginary scenario where CV19 suddenly buggered off overnight it was then discovered all that mask wearing made not one iota of difference?
The line between this and the government-says-goes group becomes thin when considering that while a person might wish to err on the scientific side of caution, they might not feel comfortable being the only person in the supermarket doing so, and therefore waited for government advice to catch-up with where they thought things should be before wearing one.
Still, ultimately it’s all about the science: science; science; science!
From an intellectual perspective:
Even though ‘the science’ might not be conclusive, those following it don’t have a very high opinion of those paying it no heed. Justified, really, given they’re putting everyone else at risk of DEATH!
Thing is . . .
- God (or spirits in some form or other)
- anger, fear and anxiety
- unseen ailments and viruses
Have been around since forever, whereas:
Where would we be then?
For years there was none of this science we are so reliant on today. Meanwhile the world continued to be shaped: beliefs formed; laws of right, wrong and entitlement made.
We might expect antiquated/unenlightened thinking to remain in the past where we perceive it belongs, yet as is evident not only does the mindset persist, it prevails in the the face of sound advice to the contrary.
Do you not know, my son, with what little understanding the world is ruled? — Pope Julius III (circa 1553 AD)
We might like to think we are a long way from a world stumbling along with little understanding, weighed down by superstitious shackles.
Evidently, though, that’s not the case. I call the mindset ‘The Medusa Protocol’.
It’s what the books are about from both an individual and overall perspective, even if Covid-19 was neither here nor there when written.
- BBC: US family ‘murdered shop guard for enforcing mask policy’
- Boston.com (original source The Washington Post): Wearing a neck gaiter may be worse than no mask at all, researchers find
- All Along the Watchtowers: more about The Medusa Protocol
- Shop: how to get The Medusa Protocol
- The Hatred of Masks and Safety: my experiences with resistance to mask wearing and Health and Safety in general when working in pest control.
Video below: Solving the Mask Shortage in Huntington.
Thanks for reading 🙂
N. P. Ryan