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Old 08-10-2020, 12:55 PM   #63
Who's askin'?
maytag's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: Utah
Posts: 2,380
Originally Posted by Frodo View Post
I don’t really want to go too deeply into the whole Constitution thing, other than to say it basically just sets up how the federal government is organized, and the responsibilities and authority of each branch of that government, as well as setting forth how that government, the feds, work in relation to the governments of the various individual states. The 10th Amendment goes on to declare that those powers that aren’t reserved by the Constitution to the federal government are by default powers that fall to the states to control. So, at least to this point in time, it’s been the states (not the feds) who have come up with the ‘mask mandates’ in their various forms. Could the feds do it on their own, for the nation as a whole? Who knows? I, for one, am not enough of a Constitutional scholar to even venture a guess.

But anyway, I think the courts have been pretty consistent that you have the rights enumerated in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, but that those rights can have reasonable limits. (The most consistently quoted: One cannot, based on the 1st Amendment right to free speech, shout “Fire!” in a crowded theater…not that those exist anymore ).

And I think the courts have, by and large, allowed states to be guilty of mild infringement on the individual’s rights under the Constitution where there is a clear and rational basis for such infringement (eg, in this case, the protection of public health) AND where that ‘infringement’ is narrowly drawn so as to minimize, as far as possible, the effect on one’s liberties. Probably requiring masks to be worn in public in the midst of a worldwide pandemic would fall into that category.

As far as your preference that we be “asked” to wear masks, as opposed to it being mandated, I understand the sentiment. I do. However to that I feel the need to add this: For months, Gov DeWine has been recommending folks maintain social distancing and wear masks when indoors, or outdoors where social distancing cannot be achieved. He’s done it til he was blue in the face. It was not until the bad numbers started going back up in Ohio that he finally said (paraphrasing…Gov Mike was much more diplomatic), “Enough! Now it’s mandated!” I don’t have any statistics at my fingertips, but I will offer this admittedly unscientific (though somewhat telling, in my book) observation: A few weeks ago, pre-mandate, I was in Home Depot one afternoon at a time when it was pretty darned crowded. In spite of the Gov’s gentle coaxing, week after week, that people should please wear masks indoors when in public, fully HALF of the people there were without masks. I was back in the same HD this afternoon with, by rough estimate, about the same number of folks in the aisles. Out of curiosity I decided to take note: Out of many dozens of people that I saw, there was this many without a mask on: One. Sometimes “Please” just doesn’t cut it..

Yup, I'm with you on ALL of this. ALL OF IT. 100%. I live in a community which, while perhaps less than other places in the nation, is the hardest-hit in Utah, barring only the Navajo reservation. And still, even with the mandate (let alone before it) the mask usage is incredibly low. I shake my head.
Now I am NOT one of those guys who's going to get on my high-horse and say these people are selfish (or worse), because I understand their mentality, I really do. I disagree with it, but I try to understand them, and I do.

Where your comments stop abruptly, though, are whether or not you think "please" not cutting-it is justification for government over-reach. (If we define over-reach as anything not specifically enumerated in the US Const. or that of the individual states.)

As I mentioned earlier; I don't necessarily know where I stand on some of this. I lean more libertarian than Republican in my own brand of conservatism, yet, when it comes right down to it, I care deeply for my neighbors and my community. Those are sometimes competing values, and additionally I don't have a ton of patience for Jack-A$$es who are purposely rude, or who hurt others "because they can". (No, I am NOT referring to those who don't wear masks. As I said; I understand their reasoning, and I do NOT think they are simply selfish or whatever other moniker others throw at them.)
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