Mandatory Masks Can Cause Considerable Harm and Are Not Proven Effective
Evidence that face masks reduce the transmission of viral respiratory infections within community settings is equivocal at best. A recent meta-analysis of scientific literature, including 11 randomized, controlled trials and 10 observational studies, found that there was no clear clinical or laboratory-confirmed evidence that masks prevent infection.
To the contrary, the study warned that facemasks “…may even increase transmission if they act as fomites [objects or materials that are likely to carry infection] or prompt other behaviours that transmit the virus such as face touching.”
This echoes World Health Organization (WHO) guidance published on January 29, 2020 titled, “Advice on the use of masks in the community, during home care and in healthcare settings in the context of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) outbreak.” In it, the WHO says, “Wearing medical masks when not indicated may cause unnecessary cost, procurement burden and create a false sense of security that can lead to neglecting other essential measures such as hand hygiene practices.” Furthermore, the January 2020 WHO guidance stated, “Cloth (e.g., cotton or gauze) masks are not recommended under any circumstance.”
Cloth masks have been found to be particularly problematic, and some masks have raised concerns because they’ve been treated with a registered pesticide. A British Medical Journal (BMJ) study published in April 2020 cautions against the use of cloth masks, citing “Moisture retention, reuse of cloth masks and poor filtration may result in increased risk of infection.” The WHO affirms increased infection risk with cloth masks in its latest June 5, 2020 guidance. It based its guidance on an earlier BMJ study that found the penetration of particles to be 97% in the cloth mask group, with significantly higher rates of infection and influenza-like illness.
A study on the CDC website that reviewed 10 different randomized clinical trials worldwide on highly infectious respiratory virus transmission found “no significant reduction” in “transmission with the use of face masks.”
Given the lack of evidence for their use, and flip-flopping advice both against and for their use by authoritative health agencies like the WHO, the increasing pressure to wear masks in public – and to be able to access basic services required to maintain one’s health, liberty and livelihood – constitutes an unnecessary power grab and means of controlling the population.
Fear Is Driving Violence and Aggression
Nonstop media and social media coverage of coronavirus has generated unprecedented levels of fear, panic and anxiety. On June 30, Dr. Anthony Fauci warned lawmakers that we could easily see 100,000 new cases of coronavirus each day. Fauci stated that he is unable to accurately predict the incidence and mortality that the US will eventually see, but he declared, “It’s going to be very disturbing, I will guarantee you that.”
Some individuals are now fraught with so much panic and worry that they are becoming violent toward family members and anyone they believe is a threat to their personal safety. Aggression toward those who don’t wear masks is becoming is increasingly common and ranges from verbal threats, to assault and battery, to murder.
In March, an 86-year-old dementia patient was killed in a Brooklyn emergency room after she lost her bearings and grabbed onto another patient’s IV pole to steady herself. The patient, 32-year-old Cassandra Lundy, became irate that the elderly woman, Janie Marshall, had broken social distancing guidelines and then knocked her to the floor.
Ms. Marshall – who initially went to the ER for severe abdominal pains – struck her head on the floor, lost consciousness and died hours later. According to reports, Ms. Lundy, who has been charged with manslaughter, told detectives that she shoved Ms. Marshall because the elderly woman “got into the defendant’s space.”
The Great Mask Divide
Masks have become one of the most controversial issues of our time. Those who are seen in public without a mask are often judged and discriminated against, even if they have a condition that precludes compliance. Harassment and discrimination have become rampant, and fellow citizens are policing each other with very little to no knowledge of why someone may or may not be wearing a mask.
Even in communities that have mask exceptions for certain members of the population, those individuals are no longer allowed to fully participate in society because businesses are barring them or won’t provide services to them without a mask.It’s a breach of an individual’s privacy and autonomy to not be able to go into public without being discriminated against, and banning people from entering or participating in society because they don’t wear a mask violates their constitutional rights.
These types of breaches have sparked lawsuits nationwide from individuals claiming they have been personally or financially harmed from mandatory mask measures. Some also contend that forcing people with medical conditions to wear masks violates Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of disability of “enjoyment of services, facilities, privileges, advantages or accommodations by any person who … operates a place of public accommodation.”
Individual Health Is the Responsibility of the Individual, Not the State
With unbridled governmental control throughout much of 2020 – under the guise of emergency orders needed to curb coronavirus – citizens from coast to coast have seen their civil, constitutional and religious rights trampled upon. An onslaught of executive orders have shaped nearly every aspect of our personal lives, from where we can go and what activities we’re allowed to engage in, to how we educate our children, to how we earn a living, to how we worship.
They have also dictated which medical philosophies we embrace and which medical treatments we can receive. In doing so, we’ve been extremely restricted in how we’ve been able to care for ourselves and support our immune systems – and we’ve been asked to follow guidelines that are not evidence-based “for the greater good.”
Although the government plays a role in controlling the spread of infectious illness, adults are responsible for their own health; each person has the right to responsibly make choices about what precautions and perceived risks they take. It’s not incumbent on government officials to direct individual health decisions, and granting them this power is dangerous. Individuals are much more qualified than public servants to weigh the risks and benefits of their own personal actions.
Public officials should not impose mandates to seek compliance. Mandates perpetuate the idea that individuals lack the moral or intellectual capacity to make sound decisions for themselves and their children, so the state needs to do it for them. Individuals are capable of making responsible decisions, and those decisions must take a person’s whole health into account.
The health of the individual cannot be forsaken or sacrificed for the collective. We can only have a healthy society when that society is made up of healthy individuals. Health is a personal right and responsibility. It is not something that we should look to the government to bestow on us or guarantee.
Masks as “Submission Signaling”
There is no compelling scientific evidence to justify the widespread push to mandate universal mask-wearing. The demonstrated risks far outweigh the purported benefits. Whereas those who wear masks believe they are “virtue signaling” their concern for the weakest and most vulnerable among us, those who refuse to submit to authoritarian decrees do so because they believe that health is a personal responsibility – and that it is up to them to decide what precautionary measures they implement to avoid a virus with an estimated case fatality rate of .1% to .26%.
At-risk populations and those who are sick can self-isolate, and society should take the best care of them possible. However,healthy, law-abiding citizens should not be forced to take any precaution that can result in physical and emotional harm and that impinges on their constitutional rights; this includes the right to bodily autonomy, the right to move about freely, the right to participate in society and connect with others, and the right to be free from unreasonable government intrusion.
BMC Family Practice, 2013;Published online Dec. 24, 2013. DOI:10.1186/1471-2296-14-200.
Are Masks Effective?A meta-analysis found that face masks had no detectable effect against transmission of viral infections. (1) It found: “Compared to no masks, there was no reduction of influenza-like illness cases or influenza for masks in the general population, nor in healthcare workers.”
This 2020 meta-analysis found that evidence from randomized controlled trials of face masks did not support a substantial effect on transmission of laboratory-confirmed influenza, either when worn by infected persons (source control) or by persons in the general community to reduce their susceptibility. (2)
Another recent review found that masks had no effect specifically against Covid-19, although facemask use seemed linked to, in 3 of 31 studies, “very slightly reduced” odds of developing influenza-like illness. (3)
This 2019 study of 2,862 participants showed that both N95 respirators and surgical masks “resulted in no significant difference in the incidence of laboratory confirmed influenza.” (4)
This 2016 meta-analysis found that both randomized controlled trials and observational studies of N95 respirators and surgical masks used by healthcare workers did not show benefit against transmission of acute respiratory infections. It was also found that acute respiratory infection transmission “may have occurred via contamination of provided respiratory protective equipment during storage and reuse of masks and respirators throughout the workday.” (5)
A 2011 meta-analysis of 17 studies regarding masks and effect on transmission of influenza found that “none of the studies established a conclusive relationship between mask/respirator use and protection against influenza infection.” (6) However, authors speculated that effectiveness of masks may be linked to early, consistent and correct usage.
Face mask use was likewise found to be not protective against the common cold, compared to controls without face masks among healthcare workers. (7)
Airflow around masks
Masks have been assumed to be effective in obstructing forward travel of viral particles. Considering those positioned next to or behind a mask wearer, there have been farther transmission of virus-laden fluid particles from masked individuals than from unmasked individuals, by means of “several leakage jets, including intense backward and downwards jets that may present major hazards,” and a “potentially dangerous leakage jet of up to several meters.” (8) All masks were thought to reduce forward airflow by 90% or more over wearing no mask. However, Schlieren imaging showed that both surgical masks and cloth masks had farther brow jets (unfiltered upward airflow past eyebrows) than not wearing any mask at all, 182 mm and 203 mm respectively, vs none discernible with no mask. Backward unfiltered airflow was found to be strong with all masks compared to not masking.
For both N95 and surgical masks, it was found that expelled particles from 0.03 to 1 micron were deflected around the edges of each mask, and that there was measurable penetration of particles through the filter of each mask. (9)
Penetration through masks
A study of 44 mask brands found mean 35.6% penetration (+ 34.7%). Most medical masks had over 20% penetration, while “general masks and handkerchiefs had no protective function in terms of the aerosol filtration efficiency.” The study found that “Medical masks, general masks, and handkerchiefs were found to provide little protection against respiratory aerosols.” (10)
It may be helpful to remember that an aerosol is a colloidal suspension of liquid or solid particles in a gas. In respiration, the relevant aerosol is the suspension of bacterial or viral particles in inhaled or exhaled breath.
In another study, penetration of cloth masks by particles was almost 97% and medical masks 44%. (11)
Honeywell is a manufacturer of N95 respirators. These are made with a 0.3 micron filter. (12) N95 respirators are so named, because 95% of particles having a diameter of 0.3 microns are filtered by the mask forward of the wearer, by use of an electrostatic mechanism. Coronaviruses are approximately 0.125 microns in diameter.
This meta-analysis found that N95 respirators did not provide superior protection to facemasks against viral infections or influenza-like infections. (13) This study did find superior protection by N95 respirators when they were fit-tested compared to surgical masks. (14)
This study found that 624 out of 714 people wearing N95 masks left visible gaps when putting on their own masks. (15)
This study found that surgical masks offered no protection at all against influenza. (16) Another study found that surgical masks had about 85% penetration ratio of aerosolized inactivated influenza particles and about 90% of Staphylococcus aureus bacteria, although S aureus particles were about 6x the diameter of influenza particles. (17)
Use of masks in surgery were found to slightly increase incidence of infection over not masking in a study of 3,088 surgeries. (18) The surgeons’ masks were found to give no protective effect to the patients.
Other studies found no difference in wound infection rates with and without surgical masks. (19) (20)
This study found that “there is a lack of substantial evidence to support claims that face masks protect either patient or surgeon from infectious contamination.” (21)
This study found that medical masks have a wide range of filtration efficiency, with most showing a 30% to 50% efficiency. (22)
Specifically, are surgical masks effective in stopping human transmission of coronaviruses? Both experimental and control groups, masked and unmasked respectively, were found to “not shed detectable virus in respiratory droplets or aerosols.” (23) In that study, they “did not confirm the infectivity of coronavirus” as found in exhaled breath.
A study of aerosol penetration showed that two of the five surgical masks studied had 51% to 89% penetration of polydisperse aerosols. (24)
In another study, that observed subjects while coughing, “neither surgical nor cotton masks effectively filtered SARS-CoV-2 during coughs by infected patients.” And more viral particles were found on the outside than on the inside of masks tested. (25)
Cloth masks were found to have low efficiency for blocking particles of 0.3 microns and smaller. Aerosol penetration through the various cloth masks examined in this study were between 74 and 90%. Likewise, the filtration efficiency of fabric materials was 3% to 33% (26)
Healthcare workers wearing cloth masks were found to have 13 times the risk of influenza-like illness than those wearing medical masks. (27)
This 1920 analysis of cloth mask use during the 1918 pandemic examines the failure of masks to impede or stop flu transmission at that time, and concluded that the number of layers of fabric required to prevent pathogen penetration would have required a suffocating number of layers, and could not be used for that reason, as well as the problem of leakage vents around the edges of cloth masks. (28)
Masks against Covid-19
The New England Journal of Medicine editorial on the topic of mask use versus Covid-19 assesses the matter as follows:
“We know that wearing a mask outside health care facilities offers little, if any, protection from infection. Public health authorities define a significant exposure to Covid-19 as face-to-face contact within 6 feet with a patient with symptomatic Covid-19 that is sustained for at least a few minutes (and some say more than 10 minutes or even 20 minutes). The chance of catching Covid-19 from a passing interaction in a public space is therefore minimal. In many cases, the desire for widespread masking is a reflexive reaction to anxiety over the pandemic.” (29)
2. Are masks safe?
During walking or other exercise
Surgical mask wearers had significantly increased dyspnea after a 6-minute walk than non-mask wearers. (30)
Researchers are concerned about possible burden of facemasks during physical activity on pulmonary, circulatory and immune systems, due to oxygen reduction and air trapping reducing substantial carbon dioxide exchange.As a result of hypercapnia, there may be cardiac overload, renal overload, and a shift to metabolic acidosis.(31)
Risks of N95 respirators
Pregnant healthcare workers were found to have a loss in volume of oxygen consumption by 13.8% compared to controls when wearing N95 respirators. 17.7% less carbon dioxide was exhaled. (32) Patients with end-stage renal disease were studied during use of N95 respirators. Their partial pressure of oxygen (PaO2) decreased significantly compared to controls and increased respiratory adverse effects. (33) 19% of the patients developed various degrees of hypoxemia while wearing the masks.
Healthcare workers’ N95 respirators were measured by personal bioaerosol samplers to harbor influenza virus. (34) And 25% of healthcare workers’ facepiece respirators were found to contain influenza in an emergency department during the 2015 flu season. (35)
Risks of surgical masks
Healthcare workers’ surgical masks also were measured by personal bioaerosol samplers to harbor influenza virus. (36)
Various respiratory pathogens were found on the outer surface of used medical masks, which could result in self-contamination. The risk was found to be higher with longer duration of mask use. (37)
Surgical masks were also found to be a repository of bacterial contamination. The source of the bacteria was determined to be the body surface of the surgeons, rather than the operating room environment. (38) Given that surgeons are gowned from head to foot for surgery, this finding should be especially concerning for lay people who wear masks. Without the protective garb of surgeons, laypeople generally have even more exposed body surface to serve as a source for bacteria to collect on their masks.
Risks of cloth masks
Healthcare workers wearing cloth masks had significantly higher rates of influenza-like illness after four weeks of continuous on-the-job use, when compared to controls. (39)
The increased rate of infection in mask-wearers may be due to a weakening of immune function during mask use. Surgeons have been found to have lower oxygen saturation after surgeries even as short as 30 minutes. (40) Low oxygen induces hypoxia-inducible factor 1 alpha (HIF-1). (41) This in turn down-regulates CD4+ T-cells. CD4+ T-cells, in turn, are necessary for viral immunity. (42)
Letter you can send to whomever you know needs to receive this because never before has it been so important for you to stand up for your rights! Mandatory medicine and mandated interventions such as social distancing and mask-wearing have no place in a free society; citizens have the right to make responsible decisions about what is best for themselves and their children based on their own unique circumstances.
Please stand up against medical tyranny by sending your state and local officials this pre-drafted email and tweet urging them to protect everyone in the community by ensuring that masks are voluntary, NOT mandatory. When you’re finished, please share this vital campaign with your friends, family, neighbors and co-workers. Remind them that constitutional rights don’t stop being important in times of emergency;]they become more important.
I am writing to urge you to do your part to make sure that mask-wearing is voluntary, not mandatory.
Many jurisdictions are basing their face mask policies on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The CDC has flip-flopped its position on face coverings several times since March but is now recommending that everyone wear a mask in public. This recommendation is not supported by strong empirical evidence. Though there is science to support mask-wearing, there’s also a preponderance of science showing that masks can cause considerable harm and are ineffective in preventing the spread of coronavirus. There is also no science supporting the use of masks by healthy individuals. So emergency orders that are being issued to help protect public health are actually hurting individuals’ physical and emotional wellbeing — and violating their basic human rights, constitutional rights, and religious rights.
Evidence that masks reduce the transmission of viral respiratory infections within community settings is equivocal at best. A recent meta-analysis (bit.ly/2VHaubd) that included nearly a dozen randomized, controlled trials and 10 observational studies found that there was no clear clinical or laboratory-confirmed evidence that masks prevent infection. Even the U.S. Surgeon General has noted that masks “are not effective in preventing the general public from catching the coronavirus.”
In terms of harm, studies show that wearing a face covering reduces blood and tissue oxygenation — which can be deadly — while increasing carbon dioxide levels. The use of masks can also increase the risk of infection and the spread of viral illness (particularly cloth masks), hinder detoxification that occurs through exhalation, impair the immune system, and cause a wide range of other physical and psychological issues. Moreover, some masks have been found to contain known carcinogens, which put people at risk from inhaling toxic chemicals and having them come into contact with their skin.
There is no science to support the use of masks by healthy individuals, and the World Health Organization backed this up when it said, “WHO stands by recommendations to not wear masks if you are not sick or caring for someone who is sick.” Forcing healthy individuals to wear face coverings is a completely unnecessary intervention that dehumanizes their interactions with others. More important, it eliminates their right to make informed decisions about what risks and precautions they are willing to take.
It is unethical and unconstitutional to subject healthy, law-abiding citizens to measures that can result in physical and emotional harm and that impinge on their ability to move freely throughout society. For those with deeply held religious beliefs, mask mandates violate their ability to abide by natural law and follow their convictions to walk in faith, not fear. As such, the decision to wear a mask is a highly personal one and should not be universally mandated; measures that are meant to protect the community as a whole are not effective if they hurt individuals in that community.
Mandatory medicine and mandated interventions such as social distancing and mask-wearing have no place in a free society; citizens want to maintain the right to make responsible decisions about what is best for themselves and their children based on their own unique circumstances. I urge you to do the right thing, stand for choice and protect all individuals by encouraging — not mandating — the use of face masks in the community. This policy can be bolstered by asking at-risk populations and those who are sick to self-quarantine, with society taking the best care of them possible.
Is there someone out there who can tell me what the end game is with the Chinese Virus? Yeah, well there’s a lot of thoughts about it but I’m going with the literal Biblical worldview of it as being a satanic “warm up” for the coming “mark of the beast”.
In the meantime for those of you embracing a non-biblical worldview, what’s the “magic formula” that’s going to allow you to sound the all clear? Is it zero cases? The only way that’ll happen is if those people just stop testing and stop reporting AND everyone stop listening to the main-stream-media!!!
Is it a vaccine? Nope. It took 25 years for a chickenpox vaccine to be developed. The smallpox inoculation was discovered in 1776 the last known natural case was in 1977. We have a flu vaccine that is only 40 to 60% effective and less than half of the US population chooses to get one, and roughly 20,000 Americans still die each year of the flu or flu complications. Oh, they powers that be will mandate it, like other vaccines are mandated in order to attend school, travel to some foreign countries, etc. We already have a growing number of anti-vaxxers refusing well known vaccines that have been administered for decades but aren’t necessarily safe! And I’m one of them: Never will get a vaccine of any kind!!! Do you really think people will flock to get a fast tracked, quickly tested unproven vaccine with aborted fetus tissue, whose long-term side effects and overall efficiency are anyone’s best guess? How long are we going to cancel and postpone and reconsider? I personally believe most sheeple will line up for the toxic injections in a heartbeat.
Aren’t doing in person school until second quarter? What if October’s numbers are the same as August’s? The way the medical morons at the CDC are playing around with numbers… yeah the numbers will be worse.
Football moved to spring? Pure insanity! What if next March is “worse” than this one was?
When do folks get to decide the quality of life that outweighs the risks?
I know that Covid could be deadly or dangerous for SOME people (actually very few), so is shellfish, peanut butter, and bee stings. We take risks multiple times a day without a second thought.
We know driving a car can be very dangerous, yet we don’t leave it in the garage. We know the dangers of smoking, drinking, and eating fried foods, folks do it anyway. We speed, we don’t buckle our seatbelts; a lot of folks do it anyway.
Is hugging grandma really more dangerous than rush hour on the freeway? Is going out with friends more risky than 4-day old gas station sushi? Or operating a chainsaw? When and how did we so quickly lose our free will?
Is there a waiver somewhere I can sign that says, “I understand the risks, but I choose a life with Hugs and Smiles, and the State Fair and Concerts and Football Homecoming and Weddings and Church and Family Gatherings.”
I know that there’s a minuscule possibility I could die from the “rona”, but IF I contract it it’ll most likely end up making me feeling terrible for a few days.
I know I could possibly pass it to someone else if I’m not careful, but I can pass any virus or bacteria or fungus onto someone else. So what!?
We get busy living, or we get busy dying. Your choice. I’ve made mine.
When God decides it’s our time, we don’t get any mulligans. As for me, I’d rather spend my time enjoying the life The Lord has given me and live in the moment and not worry about the what ifs and maybes. I betcha I’m not the only one who believes this way.