A good friend recently asked, “Why are masks so political? What’s so controversial about wearing a little face covering?”

Hanging Mask pic

The answer to the first question is straight forward. Masks are political because local and state governments have passed laws mandating they be worn.

Fail to do so and the political powers that be will issue fines, close businesses, and if it comes to it, throw people in jail. Those are decisions made by politicians who’s actions have turned masks into a “political” rather than neighborly disagreement.

The second question is more complex.

Mask mandates are controversial because there are conflicting opinions about their benefits and necessity. These views fall into three broad categories.

First, there are the militant maskers. They tend to read and believe the many studies which extol the great societal benefits of masks. This camp vigilantly dons masks while fully supporting state-mandates for their neighbors who do not cover their faces.

They believe failure to mask will exacerbate the pandemic, overwhelm hospitals and lead to unnecessary deaths. This camp typically focuses more on the overall number of COVID cases and less on the much lower rate of hospitalization and death.

We place a high premium on a sense of personal responsibility that is not coerced by political threats.

Next, there are those on the fence. They’ve read conflicting reports and don’t really know what to believe. Masks might help – might not. They wear masks in some situations, but not all. Many of them oppose mandates, but are willing to wrap up on a voluntary basis – in case it does some good.

And finally, there are those who simply do not believe masks keep people safe from a virus that easily penetrates a cloth barrier. They see masks akin to the emperor who has no clothes. He believes he is covered, but there’s nothing of substance between him and the rest of the world. To pretend otherwise is to perpetuate an illusion.

People in this camp can cite peer reviewed scientific studies, renown epidemiologists and even the initial statements of Dr. Anthony Fauci. Plus, they see mask mandates as part of a larger strategy by the state to micromanage its citizens at all cost – even shutting down whole sectors of society.

This camp is also more prone to focus less on the total number of COVID cases and more on the much lower rate of hospitalization and death – the latter of which impacts only 0.01% of Alaskans.

Watchman reports have emphasized this third view. We place a high premium on individual liberties, religious freedoms and a personal sense of responsibility that is not coerced by political retaliation and threats.

With past outbreaks and diseases our local governments have chosen to educate and offer advice while allowing churches, businesses and the free citizens of our nation to take the steps they deem necessary to avoid illness. This has radically changed with the arrival of COVID-19.

And, yes, it has turned masks into a highly political controversy.

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‘Why are masks so political? What’s the big deal?’

Joel Davidson
Joel is Editor-in-Chief of the Alaska Watchman. Joel is an award winning journalist and has been reporting for over 24 years, He is a proud father of 8 children, and lives in Palmer, Alaska.


  • Michael S Totten says:

    First off,, a law can not become a law until it is proposed on the HOUSE floor,, not the burough, not the city, and not the govorners office. Yes the state governor can SUGGEST that you wear one but anything more forcefull than that SUGGESTION becomes a blatant VIOLATION of a persons rights. Remember when pro abortionists were screaming “my body my choice” well pay attention. The anti maskers have the same right! If you want to wear your mask,, you go right ahead but do not think that you can assume to order me to wear one,, because I will not wear your SHARIA cloth! and any non law enforcement authorized citizens that want to put their hands on me because I refuse to go along with the collective conscience is getting lead poison,, I promise you! The sheep better pull their heads out of there asses and they better do it very quickly,, because the veterans have just about had enough of your shit! Keep it up and you will pay with your blood if you keep putting your hands on citizens in the streets! You all have until the end of January to decide after that the gloves come off! No more bear spray and pepper balls! Sincerely (a US MARINE) retired

  • Rhonda Stark says:

    Funny, I haven’t read any of the reports. I do though cover my mouth when I cough, my nose and mouth when I sneeze, and even say ‘excuse me’. I have a degree in microbiology and have grown things in Petrie dishes you don’t want to hear about. For years, my dental hygienist and dentist have worn a surgical mask. When my daughter had surgery, the surgeon was wearing a surgical mask. Why? A surgical type mask is a shield. Nothing more. It does work to lessen droplets that could indeed contain a virus or bacteria that might transmit to another person. I knew that long before Covid 19.

    Fast forward to Covid, masks should have never been politicized and it is a travesty they have been. I am a born again Christian conservative, champion of the 2nd amendment, gun owner, pro life, registered Republican since November 16, 1978 when I registered to vote on my 18th birthday. I have voted conservative for 42 years. With that said, I have no problem wearing a mask, especially if a private business asks me to do so. At the same time I believe our government does not need to tell me to do so. I am against mask mandates but would like to see my fellow citizens put politics aside and use common sense. There are indeed real situations where a mask does make sense.


    In Leviticus 13, God prescribed a regiment for how the children of Israel were to deal with the infectious disease of leprosy. There was testing by the priest, quarantine, and mask wearing. Notice, however that the whole camp was not locked down, nor was everyone required to cover their upper lip. It was just those who were symptomatic or showing symptoms which warranted separation for 7 days and then further testing by the priest. Interesting and not surprising that science has only relatively recently discovered the benefits of what God prescribed for His people millennia ago.

  • Mongo Like Candy says:

    Masks are a psyop to prepare the sheep for the Mark of the Beast.

  • Fergie says:

    having lived in Minnesota for 25 years and still in contact with friends there, I subscribe to a blog called “Healthy Skeptic” put out almost daily by Kevin Roche. He is a health care consultant in Minnesota.

    He started this at the beginning of the Covid pandemic and the extreme “lock down” measures taken by Governor Tim Walz in Minnesota to try and get some true facts out to the public that were not being made available by the Walz administration. In the process he has gained a national audience as he methodically reviews all the many studies around the world relating to the pandemic and summarizes them in terms we non-health experts can understand.

    Below is the link to today’s review of various studies past and present. I don’t think Kevin has any hidden agenda except to get the best information available out to the public on all these thorny issues. I highly recommend subscribing to his blog to get the latest information on the virus as we learn more about it and about the effectiveness of the various measures different government bodies and leaders have taken. It would be worth one’s while to look back over a few of his reports to get an idea of the breadth of studies and data that he has reviewed which also include many on masks.

    So far, it is his opinion that the virus has taken its course independent of any real measures taken by governments and that lock downs have done a lot of non-Covid damage to health as well as the economy.

    Keep up your good work!

  • NAV says:

    The globalist’s just preformed a test that few understand it was based on conformity and to see how many would fallow without thinking or vetting what was being said. And over 90% failed. let history be the teacher here for a moment years and years of deluge in economy infrastructure and corrupt politics not just in America but throughout the entire globe.’
    Then a businessman whom was admired by the elite and famous alike comes out with no chance of winning an election and yet with the world stacked against him GOD intervenes.
    The world goes into a panic when he tells them he is going to expose their lies and crimes and makes good on it. And everyone hates him for it with all that happening they couldn’t stop his prosperity and accomplishment’s, why because GOD’s hands are on him. So now the devil throws out another lie is there a pandemic (COVID 19) “NO” Is there a patented strain (COVID 19) “YES” (Natural occurring elements can not be patented. ) The latest medical journal report I read stated was that the biggest out break is an influenza strain but if you called it the flu you got no subsidies, NO MONEY in it so tag COVID 19 on it and $$$. Conformity was the goal crush the economy blame him for it return everything back to their normal establish socialism and destroy the REPUBLIC that is satins goal for America so he can CRUSH the Church !! So when you think about eternity next time think about conformity (MARK of the BEAST). Oh laugh if you will but remember John 8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own, for he is a liar and the father of it. But GOD’s intervening how glorious praise to the LORD our GOD the truth will prevail. copy and past and read this study from John Hoppkins on the facts.