Schools right to require students to mask up

Published 6:15 am Sunday, August 8, 2021

The Natchez Adams School District board of education deserves our praise for its leadership in making decisions that, while perhaps politically unpopular, put the welfare of our school children and teachers and staffers first.

From the very beginning, school board members chose to require masks for all who are inside schools in the district. That decision was made after the state’s top public health officials warned of the highly contagious Delta variant of COVID marching through Mississippi.

The warning from state health officials seems to have been spot on. The ICU beds at Merit Health in Natchez are filled with COVID patients. And hospitalizations at Merit Health Natchez have increased. As of earlier this week, none of those COVID patients had been fully vaccinated.

Others, like Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves, who spoke at the Neshoba County Fair during the last week of July, called mask wearing “foolish.” This advice coming from the man who leads the state with the lowest vaccination rate in the nation.

We should all understand now that wearing a mask has little to do with protecting yourself. It’s a minor inconvenience we should all bear gratefully to help our fellow man.

It is certainly something we should do to protect our children, who seem to be more vulnerable to the Delta variant than they were the original Alpha COVID-19 virus.

Mask wearing has nothing to do with infringing on freedoms. Can you imagine the reaction of the Greatest Generation over what Americans today consider infringements of rights? This generation, for the greater good, lined up and received a polio vaccine, which was a relatively new concept at the time. It’s something they needed to do for their country, and thank God they did. Imagine the lives saved.

And we today are griping about wearing a mask?

Kudos to the Natchez Adams School District board and school officials who chose to rise above the fray of politics and hate and do what is best for the children of Natchez.