Before beginning this article, I want you to stop and think about the beginning of Covid-19. The news was raging with Covid-19 spreading quickly and racing just alongside the spread were the conspiracies on Covid-19 and mask wearing. Pause for a moment and think back to what you felt when the news was circulating. Where did you stand? Were you petrified to leave your house without a mask even if it wasn’t mandated in your city yet? You have have been too afraid to even leave your house; so you had everything delivered to you. If this doesn’t resonate with what you remember, perhaps you were getting angry or “triggered” seeing people with masks because you didn’t believe it to be true. If I may, and you fall under the latter category of people, did you hate wearing a mask, and not want it to be true or did you genuinely beleieve that the protection doctors, other medical professionals and those in other countries used as a protection was harmful and ineffective?
If you were amongst those believing masks were not effective, and like the image by AFP above, belive that they’re harmful, you are not alone. This image, first released in Canada is now spread by “anti-maskers”. We can see the fear inducing in the image as even one who wants to protect themself would futher be afraid by protecting themselves.
The video done by University of Utah did a s’well job at calling out the awkward and uncomfortable, in which I believe is the root cause to rumors, like the photo, above has spread. This video shows that while viruses may be small and able to travel through the mask as a single particle, they travel in “globs” in which could not travel through the mask. Additionally, research done by the CDC, UCSF, as well as many top doctors and scientist have conducted research on the effectiveness and safety of masks. While you still stand the risk of catching Covid-19, you are highly less likely to catch and spread by wearing a mask (CDC. 2020).
Unfortunately this isn’t a rumor by conspiracist that state the earth is flat, in which, for the most part, does no harm to oneself. People are dying and losing their family members because one Facebook “expert” (also known as far-right Uncle Randy) is telling his facebook friends that the government is out to get them by asking them to wear a mask. Imagine we all stopped and thought about a moment of shock or panic we had and then never did any true research on the topic? It is similar to our friend telling us they were diagnosed with cancer, and us telling them a shake or an essential oil could heal their tumor as our friend on facebook said it so. This would be silly, right? In the same fashion, we cannot trust Uncle Randy on political insight nor medical professional advice on the effectiveness of maks.