Mask Mandates and Covid Hypocrisy
It's like 2020 all over again
With the increase in cases of the Delta Variant, cities around the country are reimplementing mask mandates for all, regardless of vaccination status. This follows the CDC recommendation that Indoor mask-wearing resumes in public places in counties with substantial or high COVID transmission or test positivity rates. That means counties with at least 50 new COVID-19 cases per 100,000 population over the past seven days or a COVID test positivity rate of 8% and above.
Eight states — California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, and Washington — have indoor mask mandates in place, as do Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia. All but Hawaii, Nevada, and Washington, D.C., exempt people who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, meaning they are at least two weeks past receiving their second Pfizer or Moderna shot or the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
These mask mandates have already started a pattern of what we saw last year. Politicians implementing and enforcing covid restrictions meanwhile ignoring the rules themselves. Over the weekend, we had Washington, D.C Mayor Muriel Bowser officiated a wedding at The Line DC hotel, where she and hundreds of others went maskless, the Washington Examiner reported. The wedding was held on Saturday just hours after reinstating the city’s indoor mask mandate for everyone over 2 years old, regardless of vaccination status.
Mayor Bowser is the latest in a long list of politicians who have ignored covid restrictions they place on others. To highlight just a few examples in what while without question be a growing list if more states and cities implement mask or heaven forbid lockdowns. Governor Andrew Cuomo traveled to Georgia last July while discouraging non-essential travel. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi famously got her done in San Francisco when businesses were closed. Michigan governor Grethen Witmer attended a bar with a group of friends in violation of her own covid restrictions.
Over the past 18 months, we have seen a growth in the executive branch in both federal and state governments. Both Gavin Newsom and Gretchen Whitmer ruled by decree for over a year. This is not how a free society functions, even when faced with a public health crisis. Eric Rasmusen wrote nearly a year ago, “that rule by decree by its very nature is prone to not just evil, but stupidity. Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely stupidly.
Rasmusen continues, “Rule by decree is stupid because it fails to use all available information. Governors are not very smart people, and when they are allowed to make laws without having to go through the legislature and the bureaucracy, they make not-very-smart laws. Legislators and bureaucrats are not very smart either, but there are lots of them, and under the Rule of Law, the governor has to pay attention to them, whether he likes it or not.”
Politicians and bureaucrats were largely unaccountable before the covid pandemic. However, the emergency powers assumed by state and local officials, along with the growing adoration of public health officials, have made holding them accountable nearly impossible. Without any real accountability, it is unsurprising that they continue to ignore the rules they set for the rest of us.
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