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Student Opinions: Mask Wearing as COVID Cases Spike

Students on Campus | Photo by Grace Ramsdell | The Wright State Guardian


As daily coronavirus cases continue to rise across the country, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, is beginning to vocalize that a national mask mandate may be required. In the Wright State University (WSU) community, opinions are varied about the effectiveness of masks.  

Dr. Fauci’s insight 

On Sept. 15, Dr. Fauci originally advocated against the idea of a national mask mandate; however, his views have shifted in the weeks since then as coronavirus cases are hitting record highs nationwide.  

“There’s going to be a difficulty enforcing it, but if everyone agrees that this is something that’s important and they mandate it and everybody pulls together and says, you know, we’re going to mandate it but let’s just do it, I think that would be a great idea to have everybody do it uniformly,” said Dr. Fauci. 

On Nov. 6, the United States reported 121,504 new coronavirus cases, with 5,008 of those cases being reported in Ohio.  

Masks in Ohio 

In Ohio, mask wearing in public spaces has been mandatory since July 26.  

“We believe that requiring masks statewide will make a significant difference and will be key to making sure other counties do not progress to a higher level of increased spread,” said Gov. Mike DeWine when announcing the mask mandate back in July. 

Three months later, some students at WSU are questioning whether or not masks are helping prevent new coronavirus cases from forming as the state continues to report record breaking case numbers.  

“Wearing masks is a complete waste of energy and resources. Absolutely no one is actually practicing correct usage and touches their masks constantly, and we continue to touch the same surfaces which means cross contamination,” said WSU student Alexandria Gillylen. “I will never wear a mask unless I am in a courthouse, and if a business tells me to put one on, I will walk right out the door and not do business with them.”  

Some students at WSU, however, do believe that a mask mandate nationwide may not be such a bad idea.  

“People who argue that masks are or aren’t really helpful both have good points and research to back them up,” said WSU student Clare Burgh. “We’ve seen by now that there are so many variables involved in how Covid-19 spreads and symptoms manifest. Because these variables are hard to account for, the best and easiest way to ensure that we are stopping the spread is to have everyone continue to wear masks in public spaces.” 

To learn more about mask requirements in Ohio, go to: https://coronavirus.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/covid-19/resources/news-releases-news-you-can-use/gov-dewine-issues-statewide-mask-order-travel-warning#:~:text=Governor%20DeWine%20announced%20that%20beginning,all%2088%20Ohio%20counties.  


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