Have We Forgotten Respect?

I want to take the time to offer a suggestion. In the current political, ecological, and health climate let’s not forget respect. I’ve noticed a lot of people talking; many people have opinions about what they believe is right and how they think situations should be handled. What I’m not seeing is a lot of listening, respecting different opinions, and an attempt to try and see where differing opinions are coming from. I’ll share with you a bit more by using the example of the current health crisis, COVID-19, and the idea of wearing masks.

The COVID-19 pandemic has fostered a lot of fear in people, some for good reason, and others out of fear of judgement. We know very little about this disease, and we are learning new things every day. There are no peer reviewed studies that offer any conclusive evidence of what should be done, so I think people are going to have to use their best judgement when determining whether they should or shouldn’t wear a mask. I trust that everyone can make the right decision for themselves and their families.

There are countless peer reviewed studies that show the harm that isolation and masks have on healthy bodies. Yet, there are arguments in every restaurant, shaming in every grocery store, and even physical assaults happening to people who are choosing not to wear masks. Several studies have been commented on, an one by a leading neurologist Dr. Baylock caught my attention:

As for the scientific support for the use of face mask, a recent careful examination of the literature, in which 17 of the best studies were analyzed, concluded that, “ None of the studies established a conclusive relationship between mask/respirator use and protection against influenza infection.”Keep in mind, no studies have been done to demonstrate t hat either a cloth mask or the N95 mask has any effect on transmission of the COVID-19 virus. Any recommendations, therefore, have to be based on studies of influenza virus transmission. And, as you have seen, there is no conclusive evidence of their efficiency in controlling flu virus transmission.

It is also instructive to know that until recently, the CDC did not recommend wearing a face mask or covering of any kind, unless a person was known to be infected, that is, until recently. Non-infected people need not wear a mask. When a person has TB we have them wear a mask, not the entire community of non-infected. The recommendations by the CDC and the WHO are not based on any studies of this virus and have never been used to contain any other virus pandemic or epidemic in history.

Simple research on the topic in PubMed will offer much of the same conclusion.

One of the main issues I see in the pro-mask arguments is face masks are used incorrectly by, in my visual estimation of watching people out and about, 90% of people. If wearing a face mask makes you feel better about yourself or more protected, no judgement from me; wear the mask. Just keep in mind, there is absolutely no evidence that face masks, when used by healthy people, even when used correctly, do anything to protect anyone. In fact, there are peer reviewed scientific studies that face masks do mare harm than good to healthy and even unhealthy bodies.

Don’t get me wrong, if you have COVID-19 or any cold for that matter and you absolutely must be in a public area, wear a face mask. You will stop it from spreading. But I also think you should take the mask off as soon as possible, because there are peer reviewed studies that show wearing a mask can increase complications of a virus. That being said, if it makes you feel better, you’ll not hear an argument from me. I respect you will do what is best for you.

I’m clearly not on the face mask band wagon, but I can respect if you are. I’ve opened myself to conversations to be convinced otherwise by friends, family, and co-workers. I want to be convinced otherwise, just give me a good reason. One thing I won’t do, is take action out of fear and let fear dictate my decision without facts. I also won’t do something just to appease someone else at the expense of my own health and beliefs with no evidence.

Many media stations have been running ads about coming together with slogans like, “we’re in this together” or “#alonetogether” feeding into the narrative that if you disagree with masks, or isolation you are in contradiction to coming together. Can we admit that coming together doesn’t have to result in group think? In our desire to foster unity we’ve fostered division. We’ve lost sight of the fact that we actually don’t know anything and should respect ALL opinions until we do.

This issue of respecting others opinions clearly needs to be addressed not only in regards to the use of face masks in our current health crisis, but in all situations. We are in the midst of a humanity crisis for no other reason than we refuse to respect each other and have open dialogue. Dialogue in which each opposing party side tries to be convinced of the other sides argument. Until we can listen and try and learn something, even going as far as showing the desire to be proven wrong, we will continue to have discord and unrest.

It begins with you. No one can control the amount of respect you will have for others. I hear people blame the doctors, scientists, political parties, and even leaders for the current climate. If you do that you are not laying blame where blame is squarely due, on the shoulders of each one of ourselves. Each of those people in powerful situations will need to search their own hearts and motives. Just remember, while we’re sidetracked by arguing amongst ourselves, they’re scheming. Keep your focus on what you need to do each day and your goals. Your only responsibility is showing respect to others in your life. From respect grows love and love spreads like a contagion; let’s spread love so thick that it becomes a pandemic.

Comments are closed.