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October 02, 2020

I’m surprised it didn’t happen sooner. That is, Trump tested positive for Covid-19 yesterday. So did Melania. And Hope Hicks, Trump’s closest advisor, tested positive just before. Sadly, not enforcing face masks and social distancing at crowded rallies, public events, and at the White House created the perfect storm for catching the rampant virus. In this time of Covid, it’s not about appearing as if there’s nothing to fear, it’s about participating in preventing the raging bug’s spread.

The moral here? Just wear the damn mask.

“At this stage in the novel coronavirus pandemic, masks are a fact of life,” said Allyson Chiu in her Washington Post article, “FAQ: What you need to know about masks and Covid-19.”

Medical professionals and public health experts have a never-ending public responsibility to continue learning the complexities of the new virus and its transmission among people. The latest knowledge translates to better guidelines.

Like not covering your nose with the mask. Remember, the nose is a primary entry point for the novel coronavirus – so says Gregory Poland, director of the Mayo Clinic’s Vaccine Research Group. That’s because the nasal membrane contains high densities of a key protein – more than the trachea or windpipe -- that Covid-19 needs to enter and infect cells.

Not covering your nose while wearing a mask, he says, “…is like holding the seat belt in your hand but not clicking it.”

And if you need to sneeze? Keep the mask on (a good reason to always carry an extra mask). Infected particles travel farther with the force of a sneeze than normal talking. Having a mask on prevents infected droplets from spraying into the air.

Well said. For the sake of a loved one, a friend, a colleague, and essential workers, I hope those who have chosen not to wear a mask because it’s an inconvenience, or because they simply do not care, will take the cue from what just happened to the president et al.

I will continue wearing the damn mask. Because I care.

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