About the Mask Debate…

So, I’m just going to be blunt. I know this may be an unpopular opinion, but I’m speaking my mind- you can like it, love it, or hate it.

Yes, masks are now mandatory in some public places. Not a big deal. Let’s put this in perspective. It’s 2020 and we have the option of disposable masks, reusable masks, and masks that show our personality through colours and patterns. Flash back to 1915 on the front lines on World War I where Canadian soldiers outside Ypres, Belgium were wearing urine soaked handkerchiefs to protect them from chlorine gas. We’re complaining about a minor inconvenience that protects our communities but my country’s soldiers had to use unpleasant makeshift “masks” to protect themselves from chemical warfare.

As for the complaints about social distancing and limits on how many people can gather… We have Zoom/Skype/Facetime/Messenger. We can still communicate with out friends and families. Even in places where the internet connection is shoddy, there are landlines so we can speak to our family and friends even if we can’t see them. In both World Wars our soldiers only had snail mail to communicate with loved ones at home. And as for social distancing- they had an ENTIRE OCEAN separating them from their families. Six feet/two meters is nothing compared to what our soldiers and their families faced.

Even these days when our military overseas can communicate with family at home via modern technology, they are still geographically separated by more than 6 ft.

Yeah, it sucks that we can’t see our families. My family didn’t get to celebrate my mom’s birthday together a couple weeks ago. We always spend birthdays together. And my heart goes out to those who have lost loved ones but haven’t been able to have a proper funeral. I am NOT saying that these are easy times. And I am not mitigating the hardships that social distancing and limits on gatherings are causing. I understand that these limits on how many people can assemble are causing problems for people who are already in difficult situations.

I think that before we complain about having to wear masks or having to stay 6 ft (2 m) apart we should reflect on the sacrifices that our World War I and World War II soldiers made to give us the right to whine about such trivial inconveniences. We need to step back from whining and do what other people did or are doing- put the “we” before “me”.

Those are my thoughts and opinions, feel free to disagree. But remember that the Allies served and sacrificed to a far greater extent so you have the right to complain about relatively insignificant things such as wearing a mask.

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