Urging a Mask Mandate

The state epidemiologist has asked Herbert to order a statewide mask mandate. We urge you all to continue calling the Governor’s office, insisting he do that. Many of you were able to get through, some didn’t, but sending e-mails helps as well. Keep it up! Here is a link to contact information: https://governor.utah.gov/contact/

We believe public pressure helped push Herbert to ask Vice President Mike Pence for a nationwide mask wearing policy yesterday. Until, or unless, we get some sensible policy from the White House, at least Utah can establish our own.

Here’s the latest good news and bad news on the virus.

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VP Mike Pence attended a large indoor church service on Sunday, with 2,000 people packed close together, with a singing choir of 100 people, in Dallas, Tx, a state that is on fire with the pandemic. Singing is the worst activity possible, and a large indoor crowd (masks or not) is the worst venue possible. New research shows that the rate of transmission indoors is 19 times higher than outdoors. We condemn such irresponsible behavior. Another example of the White House making things worse, not better.

US has joined Russia and Brazil as the only countries whose citizens have been banned from traveling to Europe. That says a lot.

New research indicates the some people are “super spreaders.” Two percent of people are responsible for 20% of infections. Unfortunately, we don’t know who those super spreaders are. New research also shows that a 14 day quarantine after possible exposure is probably not enough. In some people the virus lasts up to 24 days.

Infection and hospitalization rates are still rising nationwide with numerous hotspots, Utah is on the fringe of being a hotspot. Death rates however are falling somewhat, probably because the average person testing positive is much younger than two months ago (which shows young people are being too careless, and older people are being more careful). It may also mean that the virus is starting to mutate, which may be a good thing at the moment, but if so, that will make a vaccine less effective.