The misinformation about masks is legion:
- They don't really help you stop from getting the disease.
- They don't fit so what's the point.
- They can't be gotten.
- They are all hoarded by the Chinese, and on and on.
Why do we want masks? Because the disease has two frightening characteristics:
a. You don't know if you have it, and
b. That's precisely when you can give it to someone.
There's a lot of ignorance about the notion of the mask. Those who call for them are instantly reminded that they don't work for the person who is wearing them or they don't fit well, or that they haven't been ordered or that there are none available.
Do you have Amazon (AMZN) ?
The selection now is both better and faster than it was in February.
Second, there are always going to be people who do not want to wear masks. The president doesn't want to wear a mask.
There are always going to be droplets that get through the mask or get to your eyes.
But the fact that there is still a supermarket checker who may not be wearing a mask and can therefore give it to you -- as was my experience at my supermarket -- is nothing short of outrageous.
We spend a tremendous amount of time physically distancing ourselves from each other. It's an odds game whether it works. It sure didn't work at the Wisconsin elections last week. We often see lines for unemployment that seems pretty haphazard.
Yet, we still try to practice it.
But some things seem just totally commonsensical to me.
Why is New York hurt so badly?
Where is the density worse?
Could it all be from the surfaces which I am sure have a lot of Covid-19 on them? I think it could be from people who are carriers who don't know they are carriers.
So why not require a mask in that kind of close quarters, where physical distancing can't be practiced?
Remember OSHA? It used to be this really important arm of the government that helped workers who could not otherwise prevent injuries. OSHA inspectors used to come by to see if we were being treated right. I am sure they still do.
But customers are now an occupational hazard for workers. Why not demand that customers wear masks when they enter a Walmart (WMT) or a Lowes (LOW) or a Home Depot (HD) or a Costco (COST) or a Target (TGT) or a Kroger (KR) ? Believe me, any place where that demand is made is going to get more customers.
And how about the employees themselves? Who wants to chance it? I have already been down that path once where a checker could have given me Covid-19 and I wasn't diligent enough and/or felt weird to put it on because no one else had one on.
I do not understand how a government agency like OSHA just doesn't feel it is its duty to step up and preserve workers' health by demanding masks for the customers, and I do not understand why the stores want to risk customers' giving it to each other.
Oh and sure, we won't all put them on, right? Yes, they aren't perfect.
If we are going to go back to work, we have to accept that perfect is the enemy of good. Put the masks on.
Save some lives.
It's a great prelude to re-opening America.