Letter to the Editor: It’s not a hoax 

To the Editor: 

As a person on the frontlines who sees the deaths from COVID 19, masks are imperative and they work to prevent spread. They work. Evidence-based medicine proves it. But, I suspect a No-Masker is suspect of this truth. After all, they listen to a president who doesn’t listen to science, believes that truth is a relative thing and ignores the competent medical advisory community. His “gut instinct” is wrong and his misguided stance is killing people, and you No-Maskers are at the greatest risk.  

To the No-Maskers. This is not a hoax. Have an ounce of humanity and in the very least care about your neighbor’s health. If I can wear a mask 9-12 hours on my shift for the good of myself and for the humans surrounding me, then you should be able to tolerate wearing one for a few minutes while in a store. After all, you likely tolerated a mask as a child when you walked around happily for hours during Halloween.  

Trust me, the argument that there is a true medical condition that makes a mask contraindicated or truly unable to be worn is weak. For example, I see dying COVID-19 patients wearing them when they are in true respiratory distress. Certainly, there may be exceptions where one may truly be unable to be worn reliably. However, I am sick of seeing video after video of people refusing to wear a mask…yelling…often throwing a tantrum as if it is a welcomed freedom to place others at risk. Yes, you have a right to not protect yourself by not wearing a mask, but it is unAmerican not to try to protect and preserve your fellow American’s health around you.  

Believe me, Mr. and Ms. No-Maskerthe flimsy facemask covering your face for a few minutes in the store is nothing when compared to the alternatives that await you if you continue your misguided ways. Trust me, you will breathe easier through this mask than the alternative, which is a hard, cold piece of plastic with a ventilator attached that will stay in place for likely weeks or longer. Do you really want this method to be your last method of breathing in this pandemic? Save yourself from this truly uncomfortable, miserable experience, but more importantly, save your fellow neighbor and human being from that experience.  

How broken are we as a society where we are having this ridiculous argument? Over a simple mask…it’s literally like a Band-Aid for the face.  

I hear my Grampa’s voice in my head right now after one time I skinned my knee. I was being a brat and whining about the fact that I skinned my knee and that I needed a Band-Aid. He applied the Band-Aid, gave it a little tap with his hand, and firmly said, “now walk it off.” Which I did… 

No-Maskers. Walk it off.  

Show an ounce of humility and humanity. Wear a mask. Respect your neighbor. Preserve your community. Please.  


Michael C. Murphy, M.D. 

Winthrop, Mass. 


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