I read on Oct. 8 about the “Health Freedom Defense Fund” and their lawsuit against the city of Hailey over the mask requirement. I find it interesting that they believe that wearing a mask indoors robs them of their “personal liberties and the right to breathe oxygen.” I have two points to make regarding their premise.
First, I am curious about what kind of mask they are wearing that does not allow oxygen into their mouths. As an operating room nurse for 15 years, I wore a regular surgical mask every day for, at least, eight hours a day. I routinely would check my oxygen levels to test equipment and, not once, in all that time was I not getting oxygen. So, I would have to say to these people that no one is denying their right to breathe oxygen. They can absolutely do that when indoors in a public space through their masks. They are getting plenty of oxygen unless they are holding their breaths.
Furthermore, on Oct. 5, 2021, Nature reports “Previous studies have found that people infected with Delta have roughly the same levels of viral genetic materials in their noses regardless of whether they’d previously been vaccinated, suggesting that vaccinated and unvaccinated people might be equally infectious. But studies also suggest that vaccinated people are less likely to spread the virus if they subsequently catch Delta: their levels of nasal virus drop faster than do those of unvaccinated infected people, and their nasal swabs contain smaller amounts of infectious virus.”
So it is especially important that people who have chosen not to get the vaccine should be wearing a mask to protect others from their nasal mucus.
Point two: Personal liberties. We all are required to wear clothes in public. I find it a nuisance at times, personally, but because we live in a society where our decisions impact other people, I try to follow the rules and wear my clothes. I don’t complain that my personal liberty to be naked is being compromised.
Let’s face it people. No one wants to wear a mask. Including me. They are a hassle, and they can be frustrating. But when I hear that people are literally dying from this disease every day in our community, I buck up and put on that mask, while indoors in public places. I do it to protect the people in my community. I can’t believe that Leslie Manookian, Ryan Blaser, Michelle Sandoz, Emily Knowles, Barbara Mercer and Kendall Nelson would be so selfish to tie up the city of Hailey in this absurd litigation. I do believe that they care about their community and hope they will reconsider their actions.
Hollis Zimmer, Hailey