US Surgeon General Jerome Adams said he is against a nationwide mask mandate because it would be counterproductive and cause rebellion
US Surgeon General Jerome Adams said he does not support a nationwide mask mandate, believing that such a requirement would spark rebellion. While Adams wouldn't say during an interview with NBC's "Today" show whether he thought Americans should attend large-scale gatherings in celebration of the Fourth of July, he encouraged mask usage at them. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said the highest risk for COVID-19 transmission comes from larger gatherings. States and cities have started to mandate the wearing of facial coverings in public spaces as the US continues to see record increases in cases of the coronavirus.
Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
US Surgeon General Jerome Adams on Friday argued against a nationwide mask mandate amid record increases of the novel coronavirus in the United States, arguing that such a mandate would lead to rebellion. "Here's the challenge, if you make something mandatory, particularly for the younger age groups we are talking about, many of them will rebel and do the exact opposite," Adams said during an interview on NBC's "Today" show. "I think it's more important from a health perspective we help people understand why these are important and we help them understand why they benefit from wearing them." Despite his lack of enthusiasm for a nationwide mandate, Adams advocated for the widespread adoption of masks as a tool to reduce asymptomatic spread, arguing things like college football couldn't return in the fall without it. "If you want prom next year, please wear a face covering, it could prevent asymptomatic spread and help us overcome this virus," Adams said. His recommendations come as facial coverings have grown into a political issue. Despite his public refusal to wear a face mask for months, President Trump on Wednesday said that he thought face masks were "good" and he was "all for" them. Also during his Friday appearance on the NBC show, Adams would not say whether he believed people should attend large gatherings in celebration of Independence Day, which the president has encouraged. "It's not a yes or no," Adams said in response to anchor Craig Melvin's question about the president's Friday evening event at Mount Rushmore and planned Saturday events in Washington DC. "Every single person has to make up their own mind." The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has for months warned that large, in-person gatherings present the highest risk for COVID-19 transmission. Now, cases of the virus are on a record rise in the US. The nation reported approximately 50,000 new COVID-19 cases on Thursday — an all-time record. "The most important thing I would say to people is, if you do go out to a gathering or in public, please wear a face covering," Adams added. "As we talk about Fourth of July and Independence, it is important to understand that if we all wear these [masks] we will actually have more independence and more freedom."
The president's Friday night event in South Dakota did not require face masks. On June 20, the president resumed his large, in-person gatherings with his rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma at the BOK Center. Attendees also weren't required to wear face masks, and Trump campaign staffers were recorded removing social distancing markings that had been installed by the venue. Tulsa officials said Thursday it's too early to tell if the rally led to an increase in COVID-19 cases locally. While face masks will be distributed at the DC fireworks show later Saturday, their usage will not be required. While there has been no national mask mandate, many cities and states in US states have enacted rules that require residents to wear them in public places. Cleveland, Ohio, Mayor Frank Jackson, for example, on Friday signed an order declaring their usage mandatory in public places, Cleveland.com reported. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Friday enacted a statewide mask mandate in counties with more than 20 reported cases of the novel coronavirus. In the state of New York, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has required residents to wear masks in businesses and public spaces since April. In Florida, which reported more than 11,000 new cases on Saturday, Gov. Ron DeSantis has continued to refuse calls for a statewide mask mandate, though most cities now require them and the state Department of Health has urged residents to wear them, as Fox 13 reported.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Inside London during COVID-19 lockdown
More like this (3)
Coronavirus Victoria: three more deaths and 363 new cases reported as masks made mandatory in Melbourne
Daniel Andrews’s announcement on face coverings comes as state tries to control a second wave of...Daniel Andrews’s announcement on face coverings comes as state tries to control a second wave of Covid-19 • Follow the latest global news live • NSW reports 18 new cases, the highest number in three months• What you need to know about Melbourne’s stage 3 lockdown rules• Melbourne map: where Covid-19 cases are rising or falling• Sign up for Guardian Australia’s coronavirus emailVictoria has recorded 363 new Covid-19 cases and three more people have died as premier Daniel Andrews announced face masks will be made mandatory across Melbourne as the state attempts to control a second-wave outbreak of the virus.At a press conference on Sunday, Andrews appeared wearing a face mask and said residents in metropolitan Melbourne and the Mitchell shire would be required to wear “masks or face coverings”, including bandannas or scarves in public from midnight on Wednesday. Continue reading...
Georgia officials send mixed messages on masks: Attorney general says 'wear a mask' despite suing Atlanta over mandate to do so
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp and Attorney General Chris Carr filed a lawsuit against the city of...Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp and Attorney General Chris Carr filed a lawsuit against the city of Atlanta over its mask mandate. Both Kemp and Carr still encouraged residents to wear masks, despite the fact that Kemp signed an executive order banning localities from enforcing mask mandates of their own. Their actions have sent mixed messages on the issue. Carr said: "This lawsuit is about the rule of law." Some were critical of the lawsuit, saying it distracts from needed work addressing the state's surging coronavirus cases. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp sued the city of Atlanta over its local mask ordinance after Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said she would defy the state order that barred localities from creating their own ordinances. On Wednesday, Kemp barred localities from implementing their own mandates to wear a face-covering to stem the spread of COVID-19 and also issued on executive order extending the state of public emergency. While masks were not required he said they were "strongly encouraged" but not required, Business Insider reported. Kemp and Attorney General Chris Carr filed the lawsuit against Bottoms, who on Wednesday said she'd defy the order and the Atlanta City Council to block the city's mandate. Meanwhile, the governor has encouraged the use of masks and face coverings but has refused to allow localities to enforce their own mandates, sending mixed messages on the use of masks. Carr also tweeted that the state was still "urging" residents to wear masks. "The State of Georgia continues to urge citizens to wear masks. This lawsuit is about the rule of law," Carr tweeted. The Constitution gives @GovKemp chief executive power for the State, including during a public health state of emergency. The @CityofAtlanta cannot continue to knowingly enter orders that are unenforceable and void.https://t.co/yRSQZYDtgo — GA AG Chris Carr (@Georgia_AG) July 16, 2020 Bottoms has been vocal about opposing Kemps positions on mask mandates. "It's my belief that the city of Atlanta still has the appropriate standing to mandate masks," Bottoms said at a press conference Thursday. "Especially as it relates to buildings and places that we own and operate." In response to the news, some wondered how the financial toll of the lawsuit could have been used to assist with coronavirus relief. I wonder much $$$ this lawsuit is costing the state of Georgia, and how much testing, tracing, masks, and resources for schools could have been purchased with it? https://t.co/d1dsCA7E2l — Esther Choo, MD MPH (@choo_ek) July 16, 2020 "I wonder much $$$ this lawsuit is costing the state of Georgia, and how much testing, tracing, masks, and resources for schools could have been purchased with it?" one doctor tweeted. Others were concerned that the move distracted from Georgia's surging coronavirus cases, where more than 3,000 new cases were recorded on Thursday alone. The state has recorded over 131,2oo coronavirus cases with over 3,100 deaths. According to WIFR, at least 15 cities and counties have previously ordered masks and were upset by the governor's orders to remove their mandates. "How can we take care of our local needs when our state ties our hands behind our back and then says 'Ignore the advice of experts?'" Savannah Mayor Van Johnson asked in a news conference. Johnson told MSNBC that the governor's guidelines were not consistent. "Everybody's confused. We're getting mixed messages from everywhere, and this is a time that we should be talking with one very clear, very consistent voice," he told the outlet. Many other states have implemented rules to allow localities to enforce mask mandates including in Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, North Carolina, and Texas. Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Inside London during COVID-19 lockdown
They struck a sober note on Sunday’s news programs, strongly urging the vast majority of people...They struck a sober note on Sunday’s news programs, strongly urging the vast majority of people in hard-hit cities and states to wear masks and avoid large gatherings.