Some U.S. officials are enforcing mask rules in their communities to limit the spread of the new virus, but U.S. President Donald Trump has said he will not force Americans to wear masks,media BGR reported. Mr. Trump’s comments came after Dr. Anthony Fauci urged local officials to “force as much as possible” on people to wear masks.
A growing body of research has shown that masks can effectively prevent droplets and aerosols containing the new coronavirus from infecting others. The virus stays in the air longer than initially thought, and people who spend time indoors are at risk of infection. Masks do not completely eliminate risk, but they significantly reduce them. However, despite the growing scientific evidence that masks are effective, some people are reluctant to wear them.
Officials in power who resist wearing masks in public are partly to blame. U.S. President Donald Trump is the best example, though there are anti-maskers in other countries. Mr. Trump has only recently appeared in public wearing a mask, and his actions may have fueled the anti-mask sentiment. But Mr. Trump is not prepared to order Americans to wear masks. On the contrary, according to recent comments, this runs counter to the latest advice of Dr. Anthony Fauci and Robert Redfield, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Trump told Fox News on Friday that he disagreed with the national mask injunction, saying people should have “a certain degree of freedom.” Mr. Trump’s comments come as the nation is dealing with record new record-breaking confirmed cases. More than once in the past week, the number of new confirmed cases in the United States has exceeded 70,000, almost double the peak in April. States have reopened and relaxed restrictions, and some no longer respect the suggestion of maintaining social distance and wearing masks.
“When you want to live your life and try to open up the country, you reach out to other people. To that end, we know that masks are really important and that we should use them anywhere,” Fauci said at a virtual U.S. Chamber of Commerce event on Friday, according to CNN. The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases urged governors and mayors to “force as much as possible” to get people to wear masks.
Mr. Fauci said people who don’t wear masks are actually slowing down the country’s reopening. The infectious disease expert said he respected “the spirit of our nation’s independence”, but that was different. People need to understand that in order to contain COVID-19, communities must come together. “If we can get more people to understand that, hopefully more people will be willing to wear masks.”
He said he would “urge local politics and other leaders in states and towns to force citizens to wear masks as much as possible.”
Mr. Fucci and Mr. Trump’s remarks were made on different occasions on the same day, further underscoring the tensions between them. White House officials have recently criticized Mr. F. Fuchs, a move that appears to suggest that the official could be fired or sidelined as the Trump administration seeks responsibility for its failure.
Fauci isn’t the only expert recommending wearing a mask. “We’re not unprepared for COVID-19,” CDC Director Robert Redfield said earlier this week. “Cloth masks are one of our most powerful weapons to slow and stop the spread of the virus — especially when widely used in community environments.”
While Mr. Trump is still resisting the idea of mandatory use of masks, the BBC notes that most governors have ordered the mandatory use of masks outdoors, including Republican leaders who have previously opposed the mandatory use of masks.