OPINION: With a global pandemic, it’s better to be safe than sorry

Mariah Hanna, Co-Editor-in-Chief

Editor’s Note: This editorial was originally published in our fall print edition.

For years, Mr. Cobb has been a stickler for one very simple rule: students must wear a visible ID around their neck. However, with the global pandemic and all, he has expanded his mantra to wearing an ID and wearing a facemask correctly. The problem with that is, just like the ID rule, not everyone listens to it. 

In order to be as safe as possible, everyone needs to wear their mask properly and it needs to be enforced more by teachers and administration. 

The whole purpose of wearing the mask isn’t to protect oneself, it’s to prevent germs getting to other people.  By wearing a mask, despite being sick or not, it’s helping others. In an article by Hacksen and Meridian Health, wearing a homemade mask reduces the distance particles from a cough to 2.5 inches. In the same article, it said that surgical masks, the disposable ones handed out, are three times more effective than homemade masks. It’s never known if wearing a mask could mean life or death.  It’s never known if someone has a bad immune system and could get sick easily. Wearing a mask helps everyone, and prevents the spread of COVID-19. Everyone should wear their mask because that’s just common sense.

Another reason to wear a mask is because it is literally so easy. Many people complain because it affects their breathing. In an article by Sanford Health, they were told by clinical social worker, Emily Gard, that masks have no effect on breathing. People just think it does, when based on her research, it doesn’t do anything to one’s breathing. Based on what’s seen, that’s the main reason people don’t wear masks. Since it doesn’t affect breathing, why shouldn’t someone wear a mask? The best answer is that there isn’t a reason someone shouldn’t wear a mask. If in the future, it’s proven that masks don’t do anything, the worst thing is that we all wore a piece of cloth for a few months. Under the idea that masks are helping people from getting COVID, shouldn’t that be enough to wear one anyways? It’s not hard to wear a mask. Wear it in public, when around people, in class, in the hallways, and take it off when in a car, or home. If essential workers, such as fast-food workers or grocery store workers wear a mask for 8 hours straight, so can any high schooler and teachers.

Lastly, it’s proven that wearing a mask reduces the number of cases because it limits the spread of germs. If a mask limits the spread, the more people that wear a mask, the quicker life would return to normal, and everyone wants that. Everyone raves about how the pandemic has affected the economy, if everyone wears one, things will go back to normal. Most teenagers, however, don’t care about the economy, but if wearing mask limits cases, teens would be allowed to go out and do things with friends again. Like to the movies or eat out safely. If people don’t wear masks, things will not get better and things will not go back to normal. And masks will become more important as things get worse. So if someone doesn’t like wearing masks, wearing one now, so people won’t have to in the future.

In a global pandemic, wearing a mask is especially important because it protects others, it’s easy to do, and will help make things normal again. So in order to help, wear a mask. And if confused on other specifics to help limit the spread of COVID visit cdc.gov