Mississippi Gov. lets mask mandate expire
Mississippi yesterday became the first state to allow the mandatory mask-wearing requirement to expire as a general rule, while still requiring masks to be worn in specific situations.
Gov. Tate Reeves (R) said that he still thinks it’s advisable for people to wear masks, and he is hoping that people will wear them, but he trusts the residents of his state to make the right decisions for themselves and their families.
“I still believe that masks work,” Reeves said. “I think the facts and data across our country bear that out.”
“I have always tried to stress the important balance of this time: we cannot allow our system to collapse, and we should not use the heavy-hand of government more than it is justified,” Reeves added, according to local WMC TV 5 news. “We have to tailor our actions to the current threat, and make sure that they do not go beyond what is reasonable.”
The state also increased capacity limits for activities like football games and casinos in a new executive order, while Reeves urged schools to open.
“It can be done safely,” Reeves said. “That has been proven.”
The people of Mississippi have been locked down long enough, says some residents.
“I think it’s the right thing to do the smart thing to do. People are ready to get out and have fun. We’ve been really busy it just kind of loosens people up a little more,” Bartender Scott Pittman told Louisiana’s WAFB TV 9 news.
One Louisiana resident even drove from Baton Rouge, LA to Bay St Louis, MS—a two-hour drive—just to bask in maskless freedom after a 14-day COVID illness quarantine in Louisiana.
“It feels amazing to be out in the open again. And yeah, the only thing was the body aches were god awful but that was it,” said Heidi Talbot. She says now that she’s well again, she hopes that Louisiana follows Mississippi’s lead, according to WAFB.
“I think we all need to go back to normal you know, I do not believe that the mandates are going to be what we need, I think that we all need to go back to normal,” Talbot said.
Some have criticized the executive orders by state governors to combat coronavirus with lockdowns, capacity limits and mask orders that were supposed to be temporary measures to flatten the curve, but have been in place for six months.
“If all of us would put on a face covering now for the next four weeks, six weeks, we could drive this epidemic to the ground,” said Dr. Robert Redfield, Director of the Centers for Disease Control 11 weeks ago and counting.
PHOTO: MANDEL NGAN/AFP via Getty Images
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