To the Editor:
I recently returned back to my hometown of Fremont after a semester at NMU in Marquette. I came from a college campus where wearing a mask was normalized and socially accepted. I was disheartened to see many in this community were refusing to wear a mask in public spaces.
At college efforts were made to protect the college students, staff, and the larger community for the common good. That means if we all adhered to this effort of wearing a mask we could slow the spread of the virus, then the college could remain open, classes would continue, and we could have some semblance of normalcy.
The message I got was that wearing a mask was not just for me, but for everyone close to me, everyone close to them, as well as my college community. So when I wear my mask I think of the common good, keeping my roommate safe, his friends safe, but also your friends, family, as well as theirs. One small sacrifice for my larger community to avoid spreading illness and potential death.
How has something that protects you and those you love become so politically polarizing? This is not political, this is life and death. The importance and effectiveness of one small act - wearing a mask to protect others and ourselves from the spread of CoVid19 - has been lost in the unnecessary conflict. This is the giving season to look beyond our own self interest, to show we care about family, friends and strangers. What better way than to wear a mask? It costs nothing, but can mean so much to keep our family, friends and neighbors safe. If a bunch of 19-22 year olds, who typically think of themselves as bulletproof and self-centered can wear a mask for 12 weeks, our local community can do it too.
I challenge my home community, Newaygo County, to wear a mask in public until medical experts and epidemiologists can assure us that it is no longer necessary to curtail the spread of COVID. Let’s show that our community will put our individual needs aside for the common good in our beautiful corner of the world.
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