Sunday, July 19, 2020

Another Disease Is Spreading

The affliction, manifesting in a steadfast refusal to wear a mask, appears to arise from a combination of idiocy, sociopathic indifference to public health, and just profound ignorance. And the fact that it is spreading in Canada (the Americans being a lost cause) pains me deeply. With our culture and history of concern for the collective, I expect better.

As discussed in an earlier post, there is almost no medical condition preventing a person from wearing a mask. That fact, however, has not stopped the proliferation of fake exemption cards that are being promoted on social media, all, of course, at the expense of public health during our current pandemic.
The cards in Canada are allegedly created by an “anti-lockdown group” that opposes mandatory mask bylaws.

The Canadian Human Rights Commission is listed on the back of a card, claiming to give the holder an exemption from wearing a face mask.

“These are fake. The Commission has not and would not produce posters or cards claiming that the cardholder has an exemption from wearing a face mask in closed public places.

The card is also stamped with the Canadian Red Cross emblem, which did not approve its use.
The use of such cards brought a sharp rebuke from Ontario Premier Doug Ford:
“This isn’t the time to use fraudulent cards and to get away and be able to go into a store, don’t be a scammer. To say you can’t wear a mask and make up some fraudulent cards, it’s unacceptable. Everyone else is wearing a mask, wear a mask,” Ford said.
As well, medical opinion on the use of masks is unequivocal.
Are there any valid reasons not to wear a mask? One of the most abusive shoppers recently caught on camera was yelling about how masks make people sick. “It’s science,” he said, referring, we presume, to the “science” offered up on social media about Co2 building up in masks.

“This is nonsense,” says Dr. Ken Chapman, professor of medicine at the University of Toronto. “There is no evidence whatsoever that wearing a mask will cause your carbon dioxide level to build up and certainly there’s no relationship between wearing a mask and damaging your immune system and other nonsense you read online.”

The Canadian Thoracic Society recently issued a statement similarly claiming there’s no evidence that wearing a mask will exacerbate an underlying lung condition.
Then there is Dr. Maitiu O Tuathail, a general practitioner in Dublin, Ireland, who made a video that even the most obtuse should be able to understand:

None of this, of course, will deter the true (dis)believers, those who maniacally worship at the altar of toxic egoism, junk science and bizarre conspiracy theories.

A pity, though, that Canadians aren't more resistant to such virulent, destructive ways.


  1. I gave us credit for being smarter than this, Lorne. I was mistaken.

  2. By definition 50% of the population has below average IQ. The bigger problem is media giving so much attention to nonsense and outrageous behaviour.


    1. I think by far, Toby, social media bears a lot of the blame here.