Many people aren’t wearing a mask to reduce the spread of COVID-19 because they don’t believe the government can tell them what to do.

And they’re right. We can pass laws to set the speed limit and to prohibit drunk driving, but only an individual can decide whether they will adhere to those laws. However, as my high school civics teacher used to say, “with rights come responsibilities.”

Drinking and driving and/or speeding may kill you, but worse, it may kill someone else who was abiding by the law. The same holds true for wearing a mask. You may be willing to assume the risk, but you’re also putting others at risk.

Wearing a mask isn’t just about slowing the spread of COVID-19. Here in Virginia the unemployment rate has tripled, and many small businesses are failing. You may not know someone who contacted the virus, but there’s a good chance you know someone who has been laid off from their job because of the slowing economy.

“When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.” (Corinthians 13:11).

“You can’t make me do that” is something a child says. It’s time for more Virginians to demonstrate mature, responsible behavior.

David Colton


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