Too much deference given to the loopy conspiracy theories about COVID-19

Re: Cartoon was fear-mongering and harmful (Aug. 12, Campbell River Mirror)

Ms. Vanessa MacLean-Webber wrongly claimed that a recent cartoon of a COVIDIOT was harmful. Far from harmful, that cartoon should be viewed as a public service announcement to help identify the mask refuseniks that walk among us. The real harm was her letter itself in which she regurgitated the paranoia and misinformation of the rubbish conspiracy theories that haunt social media.

Giving space to opposing views is normally a good thing but there is no debate when it comes to choosing fact-based evidence in how to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, and the worse than useless unfounded personal opinions of people who have fallen down the rabbit hole of conspiracy theories.

Lee W. Riley, an infectious disease expert, stated that not wearing a mask is an act of selfishness, not personal freedom. I will add that the demand that people wear masks is not an attack on religious freedom, either, which is another popular but phony argument.

People who think like Ms. MacLean-Webber and refuse to wear a face mask will spread the virus. Is that too difficult for the mask refuseniks to understand? Believing in conspiracy theories will ensure that the pandemic continues, wearing a face mask will save lives and ensure that we can exit this pandemic sooner rather than later.

By the way, Ms. MacLean-Webber, your claim about face masks starving people of oxygen is so ridiculous that at least it gave me a chuckle and we all know that laughter is the best medicine in times like these. I hope you never have to go in for an operation like I did for a quadruple bypass in January but if it happens, will you have the power of your silly convictions to demand that the surgeons and support team not wear masks?

How about a trip to the dentist? They wear face masks, don`t they? Your claims made me think of a meeting in a town in Florida where evangelicals came out in opposition to mandatory mask rules being debated and said that it was an attempt to shut down God’s most perfect breathing system. Face masks don’t suffocate anyone, Ms. MacLean-Webber, but you were hilarious to suggest it.

As letters like that of Ms. MacLean-Webber sadly point out, there is far too much deference given to the loopy conspiracy theories about COVID-19 which do great harm to the efforts of the adults in the room trying to suppress this virus so we don`t end up looking like Florida and Texas where the use of face masks was balked at – 10,000 people as of this writing have died of the virus in Texas. How many lives would have been spared if face mask use had become mandatory?

In truth, there are not always equal and opposite arguments that are valid on both sides of an issue. On the issue of wearing face masks or not, there is proven science but only quackery to support the COVIDIOTS who write to this paper and others in the Black Press chain of papers.

The ignorant and selfish beliefs of the mask refuseniks are the real problem, not the wearing of face masks. No one is going to die from wearing a face mask, Ms. MacLean-Webber, but not wearing masks will ensure that people will die and the pandemic will drag on so stop encouraging people to risk their own lives and the lives of others over your facetious arguments.

I can only hope that the editor uses this letter of mine to undo some of the damage that you have caused with yours.

Robert T. Rock

Mission City, BC

Campbell RiverCoronavirusEditorial cartoons

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