Letter: Mixed messages on masks

Published: 8/6/2020 12:01:23 AM

I was of two minds when I saw a plane flying above Route 4 in Epsom trailing a banner that read “WEAR A MASK. #DON’T GO VIRAL.” On one hand I was pleasantly surprised, expecting to read something connected to the races going on that day at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Later I discovered that the “Don’t Go Viral” campaign had been adopted by visitnh.com, a campaign by the state of New Hampshire’s Division of Travel and Tourism.

This mixed messaging is perplexing. New Hampshire is the only New England state not to have issued a statewide mask mandate. Portsmouth and Nashua have mask ordinances in place. Other towns are voting this week. Thirty-three states, along with the District of Columbia, now have mask mandates; nine of those states – including Alabama, Massachusetts, Texas, and Vermont – have Republican governors. Is New Hampshire sending one message to visitors and another to its residents and voters?

Face masks are essential to slowing the spread of COVID-19. When will Gov. Sununu add New Hampshire’s name to the list of states with mask mandates? Just because mask wearing can’t be enforced doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be the law. The law requires us to wear seat belts and like wearing seatbelts, wearing masks saves lives.




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