Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Live and Let Live

At The Federalist today, Auguste Meyrat tells us that Forcing People To Wear a Mask Isn't Kind, It's Selfish. As study after study shows that masks do nothing to stop the spread of the virus, the mask Nazis have resorted to the notion that wearing a mask shows that they care. And if you don't wear a mask, by contrast, it shows that you are a selfish bastard who doesn't care. In other words, the mask is noting more that a symbol.

The immediate reaction to Abbot’s announcement reveals something deeper about the mask phenomenon, however: over the months of wearing them, they have become powerful symbols. While some might argue about their effectiveness — an argument that has long since become political — most prefer to talk about what they mean more than what they do.
And what do they mean, exactly? For many pro-maskers, masks are a symbol of charity, health, and solidarity with those who have suffered from the virus. They remind healthy people that others at risk, they are responsible for them, and conformity is essential right now.
So, if you like to do things for which you can pat yourself on the back, then go for it. However, when you force others to follow suit, you run the risk of being the exact opposite of what you are trying to be. Because, as I noted above, there is no scientific evidence that masks make a difference, so you may be forcing someone to do something against their own concscience.
To start, the most glaring problem behind masks is the hypocrisy of accusing those who dislike them as “selfish.” It doesn’t seem to occur to some of the mask supporters that forcing others to do something against their will is also selfish — like a bully telling his victim to stop hitting himself as he whacks him with the defendant’s own hand.
The usual defense against this charge is that requesting a person to wear a mask to save lives is no different from requesting a driver not to run over pedestrians or officer workers not to throw people out of buildings. But this is a false analogy. Going to a public place and breathing without a mask is clearly not the same as running over a person crossing the road.
How about if we all just live and let live. If you want to wear a mask to show virtue, have at it. I won't try to stop you. But don't force this unnatural act on others. They may not see it the same way.

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