Atlantic piece ridiculed for arguing mask mandates ‘don’t need to make sense’

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The Atlantic pushed yet another ridiculed take on coronavirus restrictions in an article originally titled, “Mask Mandates Don’t Need to Make Sense” on Sunday.

The article, written by Rachel Gutman, observed the recent rollback of mask mandates in various states as well as Washington, D.C. Although Gutman acknowledged that many mandates are perceived as “arbitrary, inconsistent,” and “absurd,” she claimed that such mandates could be necessary if they “align with the communities’ goals.”

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A sign near the Space Needle notes that masks are required for indoor spaces, Thursday, Feb. 17, 2022, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) 

A sign near the Space Needle notes that masks are required for indoor spaces, Thursday, Feb. 17, 2022, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren) 

“A mask mandate may not magically swaddle the faces of everyone in its jurisdiction, but it could remind already enthusiastic maskers to avoid large gatherings, or lead non-maskers to give the people around them a little more space,” Gutman wrote.

Gutman continued to push the enforcement of mask mandates in spite of fewer cases and a lack of trust by many Americans.

“But no mandate is ever going to be perfectly consistent, and that’s okay. Mask policies can still make sense, so long as they serve a community’s shared goals,” Gutman concluded.

The article – its title, in particular – was ridiculed on Twitter.

FILE - In this July 1, 2021, file photo visitors wear masks as they walk in a shopping district in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

FILE – In this July 1, 2021, file photo visitors wear masks as they walk in a shopping district in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)
(AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’s press secretary Christina Pushaw tweeted, “’Mask Mandates Don’t Need to Make Sense’” … but if you question them, you’re a bad person!”

Texas Conservative Chairman Matt Rinaldi wrote, “The most honest article on masking you will read from @TheAtlantic. I’ll save you the read. The ‘communities’ goals’ served by mandated masking is to indicate to people when to be afraid.”

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The article’s title was later changed to “Mask Mandates Are Illogical. So What?,” though it continued to face ridicule.

FILE - A student wears a mask and face shield in a 4th grade class amid the COVID-19 pandemic at Washington Elementary School on Jan. 12, 2022, in Lynwood. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

FILE – A student wears a mask and face shield in a 4th grade class amid the COVID-19 pandemic at Washington Elementary School on Jan. 12, 2022, in Lynwood. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)
(AP)

Several governors have announced the rollback of mask mandates, even in more Democratic states such as California. However, some states have continued to push mask mandates in schools despite the low risk posed by the coronavirus towards children. Efforts to continue mask mandates have been frequently protested or mocked.

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