I am certain that this article is going to generate an emotional response from both sides of this argument. As the Managing Partner of Cancer Horizons which is an online community with over 100,000 cancer patients and caregivers actively involved and struggling every day to have just one more day in this life, my perspective on something as simple as wearing a mask or some method to protect this community seems like a no-brainer. Regardless of personal freedoms that seem compromised, a natural disdain at being told what to do and the general discomfort that wearing something over your face in 90-degree weather brings, we need to look at this issue from a rational perspective.
Not Politics – Only Respect for Others
The wearing of masks and face covering has become such a point of contention it seems civility and respect for others is no longer something to strive for. On behalf of everyone that bristles at the thought of wearing a mask and get angry when told they have to, we agree that not wearing a mask is a right that really cannot be mandated or easily legislated, but it’s also a matter of life and death for the more than 15-million people in the United States currently fighting a battle with cancer in any of its heinous forms. Even though a cancer patient does their best to lead a normal life, it’s sometimes impossible and they lose their job, so families have to somehow step up and provide, be it Dad, Mom or the grown-up kids. Remember that when you go into a store, restaurant or any public place and see a worker trying to provide for their family, you must realize that they may leave their work go home and risk killing a loved one because a customer, any customer was careless, arrogant or indignant demanding they be served and only caring about their experience in that setting and caring little for the one helping them.
Simple Solution – Don’t Wear a Mask Ok, But Use the Drive Through or Order Online
Only a few years ago making a run to the store was essential, going out meant a fun family experience, flying home for the holidays was the norm. Now however, we have adapted and the past 6 months have proven that we can still survive by ordering online, we can even have our favorite restaurant drop a favorite meal on the doorstep. * Kudos to every small business and franchise chain for going so far overboard to make our in home dining experience as close as they can make it to actually being at their restaurant. The point here is that wearing a mask or not wearing a mask is certainly your choice, but respecting others and in particular their health or someone in their family’s health is not your right.
Disappointing Meeting in Utah Discussing the Wearing of Masks
In one of the counties in Utah, a meeting was held to discuss the wearing of masks and was overrun by over 100 people crammed into the meeting room not wearing masks and protesting the idea that their government would have the audacity to even imply they were required to comply.
I wonder if this same crowd was met by 100 kids with cancer and their parents and grandparents if they would have been so cavalier and demanding looking at the faces of those that deserve to be protected. Unfortunately, if your family has been impacted by COVID-19 and you have lost a loved one, or you are a doctor or nurse the reality of your world and death you see all around you shape your opinion on the mask issue completely and for good reason.
Retail Stores Requiring Masks –
If you think this request from some of the top retail operations requiring masks to shop there is about YOU, think again! It’s about hundreds and thousands of workers that are at risk so you can come in and get what you need. Walmart, CVS, Walgreens, Kroger, Kohl’s, Target, Costco, all are requiring masks but all also providing curbside pickup and online shopping. The only reason for anyone to enter a store without a mask contrary to posted guidelines is in my opinion they are purposely looking to pick a fight, some of which have resulted in the loss of life which is just so sad, seriously over a mask? If you are unsure of requirements, a quick phone call to the business or search of a company website will usually let you know if they require masks and exactly what their procedures are so you stay safe, they stay safe and most importantly they STAY OPEN FOR BUSINESS.
Something to think about relating to how a real man handles himself – A Gentleman:
- Offers to help any woman with her bags
- Always RSVP’s
- Knows how to listen and pay attention
- Is open minded
- Constantly proves chivalry is not dead
- Offers his seat & opens door for a lady
- Offers his coat to a lady
- Knows how to cook
- Always walks a woman home and ensures she is in safely
- Always offers to pay
- Never judges
* With this as the standard a gentleman should follow- would it ever be conceivably OK for a man to verbally attack a clerk of any gender in any store or restaurant because he refuses to wear a mask?
Final Thoughts to Get Us All Get Back To Work & Enjoying Life – Wear a Mask or Shop Differently
No egos, no politics, no desire to inflict harm, no anger towards politicians, no soapbox moment, no rational reason for a confrontation when so many conveniences have been offered instead.
If you have ever had cancer, known someone who has, are cancer survivors, work in the medical field, part of an overwhelmed Emergency Room staff, have a parent in a rest home, buried a loved one with only a small graveside service or have been impacted in anyway these past few months by COVID-19, please pass this article along so we can stop fighting over personal rights and start considering personal choices that consider those around us and the reality that there are lives at risk because that worker is helping you at perhaps their own peril.
To Close on a High Note
A friend mentioned that wearing a mask has alerted her to the reality that she needs a new mouthwash. It’s the age of discovery for sure!
Images courtesy of KSL.com news and GlobalGiving.org