Crisis Management Leadership

To Mask or Not to Mask

Because I have been only seeing patients online since March due to the coronavirus, I go to my office to retrieve mail every so often.  I went yesterday.  All entrances to the building were clearly marked in bold print reading:  Do Not Enter Without a Mask. 

As I was leaving my office, two young men behind me were walking with their bicycles that had signs indicating they were from security.  In maintaining a safe distance from them, I angrily asked where their masks were.  One promptly put his on, and the other told me he had left it in his car.  Still very much annoyed, I revealed my not so young age and said they, of all people, need to obey the policy clearly stated throughout the building.  Even though they did not apologize, they remained silent when I let them know I was not going to accompany them in the elevator.

Although the above is but one incident, I think it reflects the behavior in America that fuels the virus.  Unfortunately, our leader, President Trump, set a terrible example when he accepted his party’s nomination this past week, in front of about 1500 spectators at the White House.  Beside the fact that it was evident that his legion of fans did not obey the six-foot social distancing rule, you almost could count on one hand the number of them wearing masks.  Indeed, this is a shame.

As I pointed out in an earlier blog, labeled On the Coronavirus, the individualistic streak possessed by Americans make them less likely to follow rules than do Asians. This is why our leaders have to emphasize the importance of the directives that medical experts have formulated to gain control over the spread of the virus.  Obviously, if our leaders do not adhere to the guidelines established by our health personnel, it is not the exception, but rather the rule, when two security guards also ignore what is best for all of us.  Let all the parents and grandparents safely stay away from those that refuse the minor discomfort of covering themselves with a mask.





By docallegro

Consulting Psychologist
Specialties in: Cognitve-Behavioral Interventions, Conflict Resolution, Mediation, Stress Management, Relationship Expertise, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Fluent in Spanish

3 replies on “To Mask or Not to Mask”

You deserved better. I am sorry for the insensitivity you experienced. They were not able to see you as a contributer to our society. They lacked of realization they would not be if not for their elders.

Due to the pandemic and the controversy in mask wearing, my perception of humanity in the USA has changed. I see us as immature willful children.

I am fortunate to have experienced in Japan the care the Japanese have for their senior citizens. That same care is lacking in our culture. Shame on us. I rarely see anyone wear a mask in my town these days. I see multiple families gathering in homes and apartments with no one wearing a mask.

One of my brothers says the president is responsible for all the sick and dead people because he lacks setting a good example.

Bravo for givin’ ‘em hell, Buz!
I don’t know why there are so many nitwits out there putting everyone at risk; it’s really not rocket science.🧐

I completely agree with you that “the individualistic streak possessed by Americans make them less likely to follow rules than do Asians.” So absolutely cultural in its American-ness, but what is also culturally taught (beyond our own American individualism) is what our generation, the Boomers, shouted and pasted on things as a slogan in the 1960s: “Don’t trust anyone under 30!” I objected at the time, as I was raised in a multi-generational home, saw great value in the older generations (and younger ones)–each offering their unique contributions, and knew we’d all eventually be past 30. I am sorry this happened to you and it is undeserved. There is a larger chasm, too, between generations than there should be. There always has been, but our Boomer generation, at least some of us, started the “revolution” of freedom from the past rules when we devalued inter-generational respect and we never really rectified that part of our attitude. it’s not too late to change those attitudes between all the generations.

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