Why Texas Dropped the Mask Mandate

Delaney Morgan, Staff Writer

On Mar. 10, Texas dropped the mask mandate and has caused a lot of controversy. Some people thought it was a good idea and others hated the idea because they thought it was too soon to get rid of the mask mandate. However, not everybody has heard of Texas dropping the mask mandate.

With the mask rule gone in Texas, that means that more people could spread COVID because the mask rule is there to help people, not spread the virus to other people so without masks, then the virus could spread more easily. Redmond High School junior Cierra Cadman says that COVID could spread “because people who could have COVID but don’t know could carry it towards other people.” Issaquah High freshman Ella Doan says, “It will help spread COVID.” 

Businesses are left to decide whether to keep the mask rule or not without it being required by the government since the governor dropped the mask rule. Issaquah High senior Nicholas Santos says, “I think that they should continue it in both stores and restaurants.” Community member, Michelle Budney says, “I think stores should keep the mask rule to protect their employees and customers in this transition time. I think it is hard for restaurants because you can’t eat with a mask on. I think that restaurants should open with outdoor seating or reduced capacity until the pandemic is better under control and infections are further reduced.” 

The governor put the stores back at 100 percent capacity and everybody has something different to say about it. Issaquah High sophomore Kody Shabaga says that he did not know that the stores opened up at 100 percent capacity. Doan says, “I hear a lot of people saying that because of the 100% capacity openings more people are going to get sick or die and that the virus is going to mutate more and the mutations are going to spread more and the vaccine is going to be less effective on those strands.” 

The Texas governor probably has his reasons why he dropped the mask rule, but each person has their own opinion on why he dropped the mask rule. According to another community member, Michael Morgan, “I think he dropped it because he is trying to please his supporters in Texas.” Issaquah High senior Caroline McGaughey says that she does not know why he dropped the mask rule. Issaquah High junior Seth Anderson says that the governor “doesn’t believe that COVID is really a threat, and a lot of people that he works with don’t think it is either.” 

People were getting impatient with the mask mandate and wanted to get rid of it. Some people have different opinions on why people were getting so impatient about the mask mandate. Issaquah High sophomore Maya Ryan says, “Because they are immature and they don’t realize that it is hurting other people and saying that it is oppressing them as an excuse to not wear masks.” Issaquah High freshman Dominic Mendoza says, “I think a lot of people are sick of being stuck at home and not being able to see friends.”

Some people are getting annoyed at the governor for dropping the mask rule, which is understandable. According to Budney, “I think it is understandable that they are annoyed. I think everyone is frustrated with COVID and people are responding in a variety of different ways.” Doan says, “I think that his decision to drop the mask mandate has caused a lot of controversy because some people agree that he should have dropped it and other people thought he shouldn’t have dropped the mask mandate because it is putting a lot of people at risk and it wasn’t a good decision.” According to Cadman, “I think that it makes complete sense because of the conditions in which COVID can cause health problems and worsen the effects of health problems already in place.” 100 percent of the people that I interviewed have agreed that it is understandable that people are annoyed at the Texas governor for dropping the mask rule. 

Before dropping the mask mandate, the Texas governor did not even consult the chief medical officer. Some people have different reasons why they think that it was not a good idea that he did not consult the chief medical officer. According to Santos, “Without having consulted the chief medical officer then it would’ve been a bad idea to drop the mask mandate.” Mendoza says, “I think the governor should, it is always a good idea to have an extra opinion on something before acting on it.” According to Doan, “I think he should’ve because the governor is a politician and he doesn’t know as much as somebody who works in the medical field and should’ve gotten a professional perspective on whether getting rid of the mask mandate was a good idea.”

When the Texas governor got rid of the mask mandate, he was trying to appease the impatient people but did not consult the medical professionals to see if it was a good idea. He also left it in the hands of the business owners to know if they wanted to keep the mask rule in their store or restaurant but because the government was not enforcing the mask rule anymore meant that more people put up a fuss when store owners told them that they could not go in their store without a mask. A lot of people thought that it was not a good idea that the governor dropped the mask rule since it is still too soon in the pandemic to do that. All the people that I interviewed also believe that without the mask rule being enforced that COVID could spread easier and faster. In an article talking about the Texas Mask mandate, Governor Abbott said, “Too many Texans have been sidelined from employment opportunities. Too many small business owners have struggled to pay their bills. This must end. It is now time to open Texas 100%.”