What happened to common sense?

Letter to the Editor

The ongoing dispute over whether to wear a mask or not wear a mask boils down to 1 word. Narcissism. Just so everyone is on the same page . . . Narcissism is the pursuit of gratification from vanity or egotistic admiration of one’s idealized self image and attributes. For many people in 2020 North Dakota, friends do not matter, neighbors do not matter, health care workers do not matter, what matters is that you are free to exercise your god given right to do what you want even if it endangers your community. What happened to common sense?

Maybe some of the anti-maskers don’t understand the math behind the pandemic. Using the current statistics from the state of ND, more than 1 percent of the people that have been infected with COVID-19 have died from the disease. The total number infected represents about 10 percent of the total ND population and 700 people no longer alive. If you think herd immunity is the answer you should do some projections. For herd immunity assume you have to get 80% of the population infected. Based on the current death rate that means you will also have 5000 to 6000 dead people in ND from COVID-19. That is almost one of every 100 people in the state. That sums up herd immunity. Common sense would indicate that you want to minimize the number of people with the disease to give yourself time to let a vaccine improve the overall outcome.

Why wear a mask? You wear a mask to lower the transmission rate of the virus. If on average everyone with the disease gives it to less than 1 other person the number of cases will begin to decrease. On the other hand, if the average is greater than 1 the disease will eventually spread out of control.

Check the Narcissism. Wear a mask. Worry about your friends and neighbors. Prove to the world that common sense isn’t dead in North Dakota.

(Meyer is a 1981 graduate of Tioga High School.)

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