Fighting Mask Mandates, and Winning

 

The school board decided to keep things as parent’s choice. So, success!

The nature of the meeting was that we didn’t have much opportunity to interact with one another, but emotions being high, that was likely a good thing.

Considering the short notice and the early hour, I was impressed by the crowd. I arrived at 8:30 and couldn’t find parking. I parked illegally and entered the very crowded room with standing room only.

Figuring out how to get on the docket for public statements was tricky. I figured out I was supposed to fill out a paper with my name, topic, address (proof of residence I guess), and submit it to the clerk who added me to a stack. My late addition had me speaking at 2:00, just after a childhood friend who I was not expecting to see.

A lot of parents came very well prepared and very anti-mask. The arguments ranged from constitutional and parental rights to science not supporting mask-wearing. We heard from stay-at-home moms, dads, ICU nurses, doctors, lawyers, and even a paramedic technician trained in properly fitting masks and PPE for medical professionals. Several students even presented, including a 12-year-old with a speech impediment. He received a standing ovation, certainly a confidence boost for someone who would typically avoid public speaking.

There were maybe a dozen mask mandate supporters, including a high school student who voiced her fears of being on campus with unmasked people, not understanding why they were whining while she was handling it in the 90-degree heat with asthma. She was the most pathetic. The most sympathetic was the father of an autistic boy who had been making so much progress in school, but his parents were uncomfortable with sending him to school without mandatory masking.

My kids’ music lesson provider was the one that angered me the most and I may give her a piece of my mind when we go tomorrow. Her equating her music studio, where kids mask for 30 minutes a week, to school masking was atrocious. I’d leave, but I really like our guitar instructor and creatives tending to be emotional thinkers, I doubt I’ll find anyone capable with different policies anyway.

The crowd was a bit unruly. I’m telling you, if you want allies against the left, you must learn to take them as they are. There were two or three that were far too conspiratorial for me. One that may have even been more conspiratorial than Carol (meant in friendly fashion). All were loud and sometimes obnoxious, with applause, booing, and a smattering of heckling. I occasionally got in on the fun and got a pretty sound warning from an officer for saying the surrounding school boards suck when a presenter was appealing to their actions for why we should instate mandates. Having come from one of those counties, I have first-hand knowledge.

It may be my bias, but I feel the rowdy rudeness of the anti maskers was far less burdensome than the condescension of the people behind us who believed that all of our sources were false information. The anti maskers provided sources from the CDC, NIH, AAPS, and foreign scientific studies. I think the condescension was poorly earned and that their presentations were laced with their hatred for the rest of us, while we continually reached out a hand acknowledging their concerns and rights to mask their kids. One, I would categorize as an angry Joy from “The View.” She even glowered at the people behind her.

I think it was an excellent experience. But I may think differently if I had been the minority. I know a lot of pro-maskers that were poorly represented, but I hope the crowd today was representative of the whole.

*This is an update to a previous post. To see the long version of my presentation, find it here.

Published in General
This post was promoted to the Main Feed by a Ricochet Editor at the recommendation of Ricochet members. Like this post? Want to comment? Join Ricochet’s community of conservatives and be part of the conversation. Get your first month free.

There are 27 comments.

Become a member to join the conversation. Or sign in if you're already a member.
  1. Arahant Member
    Arahant
    @Arahant

    Hurrah!

    • #1
  2. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot) Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patriot)
    @ArizonaPatriot

    Good for you!  And for the kids.

    • #2
  3. Nohaaj Coolidge
    Nohaaj
    @Nohaaj

    best news I heard today!  Congratulations.  and keep up the good fight. 

    • #3
  4. Spin Coolidge
    Spin
    @Spin

    Look, when even the Atlantic is posting about the harms of masking kids in school…

    • #4
  5. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    Brava!

    • #5
  6. tigerlily Member
    tigerlily
    @tigerlily

    Congrats!

    • #6
  7. Mark Camp Member
    Mark Camp
    @MarkCamp

    When a bunch of us join to say “Brava!” we are saying something new, something that has not been heard before here, or hardly so.

    We are not amazed and admiring of more talk that echoes our thoughts.

    We are amazed and admiring of what you, as a person did, to turn  all of our objections, all our talk, all our sarcastic whining and impotent pessimism, into positive action in the face of the worst that the enemy could give in face-to-face combat.

    Brava, Stina!

    • #7
  8. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    The battle is won, the war is still ongoing. Keep the faith, stand strong, enjoy the flush of victory, and keep your powder dry.

    • #8
  9. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Well done, Stina! You are courageous to take that stand, and your actions serve as a wonderful role model for everyone!

    • #9
  10. Doctor Robert Member
    Doctor Robert
    @DoctorRobert

    Bravo Stina!  Can you please share the final text that you presented?

    • #10
  11. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    My name is Stina. I have three children in the Seminole County Public School system.

    I am not ok with my children wearing masks for 6-8 hours a day. I understand there are parents who are terrified of COVID-19 and feel strongly about their children’s health and safety. Don’t we all? I’m not here to say they cannot act on their convictions. However, I am here because they wish to force me to abdicate my convictions and force my children to wear masks to school.

    This issue is rife with strong feelings and opinions. So, we turn to science for objectivity. But even here, consensus does not exist. For every study you bring up showing masks work, I can bring up a study showing that masks do not. Both sides can lay claim to highly reputable authorities to bolster our arguments.

    To demonstrate, I have a collection of studies from the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons. It outlines the findings of multiple studies on the efficacy of mask wearing. They show that N-95 masks, tightly fitted and worn for short durations, provides the best results for controlling viral spread. How many here are sending their children to school in tightly fitted N-95 masks their kids never touch? How many are only wearing them for short durations? Six – 8 hours isn’t short.

    [Cont.]

     

    • #11
  12. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    Instead, we are sending our kids with little pieces of cloth strapped to their faces. (Read the label) While great at hiding beautiful smiles, this cloth does little at stopping a virus that is 125 thousandths of a micron small. In 2010, a study on cloth masks showed they had near zero efficiency at 3 tenths of a micron. That’s more than twice the size of the COVID virus.

    In 2015, a study from Australia showed cloth masks had an increased risk of infection. A few months ago, the University of Florida did a study on several masks and discovered the presence of 11 pathogens, including bacteria causing diphtheria, pneumonia, and meningitis, all more dangerous to our kids than Covid. And we want to put these on our children’s faces?

    The evidence to support masking simply does not exist.

    Finally, of what benefit does it gain our children to be forced to wear masks? Kids were still testing positive for COVID-19 last year. One parent reported to me that her kids were quarantined 4 times last year, in spite masking. My son was quarantined over his birthday, the second year in a row. Will forced masking do away with quarantines? Or will we continue to subject our kids to a policy possessing a host of negatives and absolutely no positives?

    I implore this board that, in the absence of a consensus of scientific evidence, you side with parents having freedom to make the best choices for their children. We should all, both mask wearers and naked facers, be given the freedom to act on our own, deeply held convictions, however divergent they may be. Please do not re-instate the mask mandates.

    Thank you.

    • #12
  13. CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill Coolidge
    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill
    @CarolJoy

    Yes, hurrah!

    Was I reading it right that you spoke at 2Am? Or two hours after the meeting began?

    In any event, that is one great outcome.

    • #13
  14. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill (View Comment):

    Yes, hurrah!

    Was I reading it right that you spoke at 2Am? Or two hours after the meeting began?

    In any event, that is one great outcome.

    2 pm. Sorry. 5 hours into the meeting. We left after I spoke (none of us had eaten).

    If you find the board meeting on YouTube, I’m at 5:14:00-ish.

    Apparently, the discussion after I left was really interesting. The School Board overwhelmingly wants to drop the masks (exception being 1 member). They would like to look into ways to support the staff in contact tracing, alleviating the burden (nearly all the school quarantines are induced community spread, not school spread). They were talking about using anti-gen tests as a stand-in for covid infections – apparently, kids who tested positive and were quarantined do not need to be quarantined for 90 days. By adding the anti-gen to the 90 day no-quarantine window, they alleviate the burden on testing, where the DOH was saying they are having a supply issue.

    Really interesting discussions. And apparently, a lot of affirmation of parental knowledge, which is amazing for a board of mostly teachers and affirms why I moved here.

    • #14
  15. CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill Coolidge
    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill
    @CarolJoy

    Stina (View Comment):

    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill (View Comment):

    Yes, hurrah!

    Was I reading it right that you spoke at 2Am? Or two hours after the meeting began?

    In any event, that is one great outcome.

    2 pm. Sorry. 5 hours into the meeting. We left after I spoke (none of us had eaten).

    If you find the board meeting on YouTube, I’m at 5:14:00-ish.

    Apparently, the discussion after I left was really interesting. The School Board overwhelmingly wants to drop the masks (exception being 1 member). They would like to look into ways to support the staff in contact tracing, alleviating the burden (nearly all the school quarantines are induced community spread, not school spread). They were talking about using anti-gen tests as a stand-in for covid infections – apparently, kids who tested positive and were quarantined do not need to be quarantined for 90 days. By adding the anti-gen to the 90 day no-quarantine window, they alleviate the burden on testing, where the DOH was saying they are having a supply issue.

    Really interesting discussions. And apparently, a lot of affirmation of parental knowledge, which is amazing for a board of mostly teachers and affirms why I moved here.

    I am not seeing a link to a Youtube of the meeting. Can you post it or PM it to me? (When you have a chance.)

    • #15
  16. Doctor Robert Member
    Doctor Robert
    @DoctorRobert

    Stina (View Comment):

    Instead, we are sending our kids with little pieces of cloth strapped to their faces. (Read the label) While great at hiding beautiful smiles, this cloth does little at stopping a virus that is 125 thousandths of a micron small. In 2010, a study on cloth masks showed they had near zero efficiency at 3 tenths of a micron. That’s more than twice the size of the COVID virus.

    In 2015, a study from Australia showed cloth masks had an increased risk of infection. A few months ago, the University of Florida did a study on several masks and discovered the presence of 11 pathogens, including bacteria causing diphtheria, pneumonia, and meningitis, all more dangerous to our kids than Covid. And we want to put these on our children’s faces?

    The evidence to support masking simply does not exist.

    Finally, of what benefit does it gain our children to be forced to wear masks? Kids were still testing positive for COVID-19 last year. One parent reported to me that her kids were quarantined 4 times last year, in spite masking. My son was quarantined over his birthday, the second year in a row. Will forced masking do away with quarantines? Or will we continue to subject our kids to a policy possessing a host of negatives and absolutely no positives?

    I implore this board that, in the absence of a consensus of scientific evidence, you side with parents having freedom to make the best choices for their children. We should all, both mask wearers and naked facers, be given the freedom to act on our own, deeply held convictions, however divergent they may be. Please do not re-instate the mask mandates.

    Thank you.

    Excellent.  Well done.  You took your previous way-too-long version and distilled it into pure truth.  Bravo!

    • #16
  17. Flicker Coolidge
    Flicker
    @Flicker

    I’m glad.  I’m smiling.  And you are a hero to me.

    • #17
  18. DrewInWisconsin, Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Stina: I’m telling you, if you want allies against the left, you must learn to take them as they are.

    I think this is the most important sentence in your post.

    • #18
  19. Hammer, The (Ryan M) Member
    Hammer, The (Ryan M)
    @RyanM

    Commenting after just reading the first sentence.  That is wonderful!  I am very happy to hear it.

    I have seen this a few places and have quoted it (not perfectly… it’s from memory!) many times because it is so appropriate:

    “People go mad all at once; it is only one at a time and very slowly that they wake up.”

    18 months is way too long for people to be waking up, but I hope they finally are.

    • #19
  20. DrewInWisconsin, Oaf Member
    DrewInWisconsin, Oaf
    @DrewInWisconsin

    Hammer, The (Ryan M) (View Comment):

    Commenting after just reading the first sentence. That is wonderful! I am very happy to hear it.

    I have seen this a few places and have quoted it (not perfectly… it’s from memory!) many times because it is so appropriate:

    “People go mad all at once; it is only one at a time and very slowly that they wake up.”

    18 months is way too long for people to be waking up, but I hope they finally are.

    To be fair, some people woke up right away, and others at different points over these 18 months. The question is whether we’ve reached a critical mass yet.

    I see the fearmongers are out there yapping about a “Mu” variant, while they continue to babble about vaccine mandates and passports and the administration encourages businesses to shut out anyone who doesn’t have their papers in order.

    And they call us Nazis.

    • #20
  21. RichardKoenig Coolidge
    RichardKoenig
    @RichardKoenig

    Congrats!

    • #21
  22. TempTime Member
    TempTime
    @TempTime

    Just watched your presentation.   Thank you.

    Here’s the link …  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWFMRfb105o

     

    • #22
  23. Sandy Member
    Sandy
    @Sandy

    Great job!

    • #23
  24. JustmeinAZ Member
    JustmeinAZ
    @JustmeinAZ

    WooHoo!

    • #24
  25. Percival Thatcher
    Percival
    @Percival

    Well done, Stina. I’m listening to it now.

    • #25
  26. Flicker Coolidge
    Flicker
    @Flicker

    Good going, Stina.  Very good!

    • #26
  27. Jimmy Carter Member
    Jimmy Carter
    @JimmyCarter

    Go get ‘em, Stina.

    Brava.

    • #27