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Analysis: Ron DeSantis has no idea what he’s talking about

“Politicians want to force you to cover your face as a way for them to cover their own asses. That’s just the truth. They want to be able to say they are taking this on and they’re doing this even though it’s not proven to be effective they want to continue to do it.”

It’s a good applause line! People in his base don’t like politicians or wearing masks, so combine the two and — voila! — cheering.

Except that, well, DeSantis is totally wrong about masking — specifically when he says “even though it’s not proven to be effective.”

“Masks are a simple barrier to help prevent your respiratory droplets from reaching others. Studies show that masks reduce the spray of droplets when worn over the nose and mouth.”

“Community mask wearing substantially reduces transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus in 2 ways. First, masks prevent infected persons from exposing others to SARS-CoV-2 by blocking exhalation of virus-containing droplets into the air. … Second, masks protect uninfected wearers. Masks form a barrier to large respiratory droplets that could land on exposed mucous membranes of the eye, nose, and mouth.”

There’s lots (and lots) more studies that make the same point: While masks aren’t perfect, they are one of the best ways we have of slowing the spread of the virus. That’s especially true for the unvaccinated but also true for those who have already been vaccinated.

I can’t imagine DeSantis is unaware of all of that data. But he’d rather get a cheap bit of applause than do the responsible thing, which is to tell people to wear masks as a way to slow the speed of the Delta variant.

This isn’t some theoretical debate. According to The New York Times, deaths from Covid-19 in Florida have increased 123% over the last two weeks. Who’s clapping now?

The Point: Masking DOES NOT have to be a political issue. It is a public health matter. Except politicians like DeSantis can’t seem to grasp that fact. Or just don’t want to.

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