The Mighty Logo

Dear Texans, Do the Right Thing

The most helpful emails in health
Browse our free newsletters

As the world continues to struggle with the COVID-19 pandemic, some places like my home state of Texas have chosen to lift all mask requirements and allow all businesses to open without restrictions. To put it simply: The Texas government seems to think that the pandemic is over.

Make no mistake, I love my state. I’m a fifth generation native Texan and I wouldn’t change it for anything. But, I’m ashamed and embarrassed by this egregious act which will put the lives of my fellow Texans at significant risk. I’m angry. I’m scared. I’m confused. I don’t know what to think or feel.

I just keep asking myself, “What is going to happen now?”

I understand that businesses need to make money and people need work. But giving everyone a free pass to do as they please without any precautions or regulations is unfathomably ignorant. What happens next? Large gatherings and even small ones are going to cause a surge in cases. There are nowhere near enough vaccinated people to rationalize this action right now. It is a short sighted and dangerous move.

Wearing a mask is a simple preventative measure against the virus. It’s beyond me how our Governor could think it’s a good idea to give Texans the impression that it is safe to “return to normal.” How can he think this is a good idea when doctors and scientists have emphasized over and over that we must continue using preventative safety measures to control the spread of COVID-19. Clearly a politician thinks he knows more than the people who have studied these things their entire lives– and Texans are going to pay the price for that egotism.

There is a sliver of hope, however. Many businesses are refusing to allow entry without a mask, despite lifting the statewide mandate. Businesses are taking it upon themselves to enforce mask wearing. People all over social media are posting that they will keep wearing a mask. I was nearly speechless when I went to the hardware store and saw every single person in a mask. The store wasn’t mandating it, but the people were doing it. It seems that “the people” are mopping up the mess that “the politicians” have made. People are doing the right thing. Businesses are doing the right thing, and a great many Texans are looking at our leaders with revulsion for putting our lives in danger.

Not all businesses, or people, will continue to wear masks. Many people probably tossed theirs the moment that the announcement was made. People are probably planning big parties and gatherings. Some businesses are probably crowding in as many people as they can. The sad reality is that many Texans are going to get sick, and even die, because politicians didn’t do what the professionals begged us all to do.

It’s a simple request: Wear a mask.

You can help stop the spread of the virus. You can help us get back to normal sooner by slowing the spread. Wearing a mask now, means we can all safely remove them sooner. The more people don’t wear them right now, the longer it will take to get the pandemic under control.

Such a simple thing yet such controversy over it. It’s ludicrous and irresponsible. The doctors have told you. The scientists have told you. The people who know what they’re talking about have told you what to do – and you ignored them all.

Our government has failed the people of this state and on behalf of the Texans whose safety they have so cavalierly disregarded, I have one thing to say to them:

Wear a damn mask.

Lead image courtesy of Contributor’s Twitter account

Originally published: March 10, 2021
Want more of The Mighty?
You can find even more stories on our Home page. There, you’ll also find thoughts and questions by our community.
Take Me Home