As the United States begins to re-open from lockdowns, jurisdictions are instituting measures that dictate how people are able to participate in society. One of the most common is compulsory mask-wearing. Officials throughout the country are seeking policy guidance on masks from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which has flip-flopped its position on face coverings several times since March but is now recommending that everyone wear a mask in public. State and local authorities are taking varying approaches in what their emergency mask orders stipulate and how they will be enforced. Rules differ by state and are constantly changing. However, to date, only a handful of states don’t have any mandatory mask measures. Though CDC’s policy guidance encourages the use of face masks, there is substantial evidence showing that masks are harmful and a lack of evidence showing they are effective in preventing the spread of coronavirus. Studies show that wearing a face covering reduces blood and tissue oxygenation — which can be deadly — while increasing carbon dioxide levels. Mask-wearing can also increase the risk of infection and the spread of viral illness, hinder detoxification that occurs via exhalation, impair the immune system and cause many other ailments, both physical and emotional. 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. Lawsuits are now being filed throughout the country to challenge mandatory masks. Despite evidence of harm and questionable evidence of benefit, fall 2020 school guidelines across the country are calling for mandatory masks. Public school systems (e.g., San Diego, California) are concerned that mask requirements in the classroom will spark even more legal battles. It is unethical and unconstitutional to force healthy citizens to abide by measures that can result in physical and emotional harm and that impinge on their ability to move freely throughout society without discrimination. 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 ineffective if they hurt individuals in that community. Please email and tweet your lawmakers now and urge them to do their part to make sure that mask-wearing is voluntary, not mandatory. References 1. bin-Reza F et al. The use of mask and respirators to prevent transmission of influenza: A systematic review of the scientific evidence. Resp Viruses 2012;6(4):257-67. 2. Zhu JH et al. Effects of long-duration wearing of N95 respirator and surgical facemask: a pilot study. J Lung Pulm Resp Res 2014:4:97-100. 3. Ong JJY et al. Headaches associated with personal protective equipment- A cross-sectional study among frontline healthcare workers during COVID-19. Headache 2020;60(5):864-877. 4. Bader A et al. Preliminary report on surgical mask induced deoxygenation during major surgery. Neurocirugia 2008;19:12-126. 5. Shehade H et al. Cutting edge: Hypoxia-Inducible Factor-1 negatively regulates Th1 function. J Immunol 2015;195:1372-1376. 6. Westendorf AM et al. Hypoxia enhances immunosuppression by inhibiting CD4+ effector T cell function and promoting Treg activity. Cell Physiol Biochem 2017;41:1271-84. 7. Sceneay J et al. Hypoxia-driven immunosuppression contributes to the pre-metastatic niche. Oncoimmunology 2013;2:1 e22355. 8. Blaylock RL. Immunoexcitatory mechanisms in glioma proliferation, invasion and occasional metastasis. Surg Neurol Inter 2013;4:15. 9. Aggarwal BB. Nucler factor-kappaB: The enemy within. Cancer Cell 2004;6:203-208. 10. Savransky V et al. Chronic intermittent hypoxia induces atherosclerosis. Am J Resp Crit Care Med 2007;175:1290-1297. 11. Baig AM et al. Evidence of the COVID-19 virus targeting the CNS: Tissue distribution, host-virus interaction, and proposed neurotropic mechanisms. ACS Chem Neurosci 2020;11:7:995-998. 12. Wu Y et al. Nervous system involvement after infection with COVID-19 and other coronaviruses. Brain Behavior, and Immunity, In press. 13. Perlman S et al. Spread of a neurotropic murine coronavirus into the CNS via the trigeminal and olfactory nerves. Virology 1989;170:556-560.

Yvonne Johnson 3 months ago

I do not support more taxes. I suggest a 10% city wide budget cut starting with the city manager. Additionally, employees need to start paying their own retirement, and the city needs to fund their liabilities.

Before the COVID crisis this county had a poverty rate of 21%. You can bet it's much higher now.

Yet amazingly the city council is seriously considering spending eighty thousand of our tax dollars for election costs plus tens of thousands more on a PR firm in order to pursue a sales tax increase that will cost a family of four an additional $800 in sales tax every year!

And for what? A futile attempt to maintain unfunded liabilities that have spiralled out of control and are destroying city finance.

Sales taxes are regressive and hurt the poor and working classes the most. So if the so-called progressives on this council who claim to care so much for poor and working people go through with this they will be exposed as hypocrites, frauds and tools of special interests.

And Chico's infrastructure was falling apart long before COVID and the Camp Fire. For many, many years this city council and prior councils have been diverting tens of millions of dollars that should have gone for the roads and other necessities to ridiculous employee compensation, especially pension and other post-employment benefits that are completely unaffordable and unsustainable.

Trying to maintain this unconscionable status quo of excessive compensation, especially multi-million dollar pensions and other post-employment benefits for city bureaucrats and other city employees, on the backs of poor and working people is shameful.

Their sales tax increase won’t solve the unfunded liability problem so what will they do? Use the money from the sales tax increase to get us hundreds of millions more in debt! AND THEY WON'T TELL THE VOTERS THAT BEFORE AND DURING THE ELECTION! They have never mentioned it before.

Neither did EMC, the propaganda firm they hired to con the voters into raising the sales tax with their sham survey. Why didn't EMC ask the people they polled if they would approve the use of their sales tax money to take on more debt?

Before the election will they inform the public that money from the sales tax increase will be used to take on more debt? If they don't mention it, it shows just how immoral they are.

Saddling the poor and everyone else with higher taxes and more debt in a futile attempt to maintain an unfair and unsustainable status quo is immoral, particularly the debt they will be putting on the kids! Taking on more debt while the city is drowning in unfunded liabilities is the height of irresponsibility.

Instead they should reform the unfunded liabilities but as tools of special interests that’s the last thing they will do. We MUST defeat their sales tax increase.