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April 15, 2021 (American Thinker) – Social distancing, mask mandates, and lockdowns have put civil society on ice. Church congregations either do not meet, “meet” in socially distancing congregations, or try to fellowship over video conferencing. Many schools are still closed, still trying to replace face-to-face learning with farcical “distance learning.” Public sporting events have been almost nonexistent. Many small businesses have gone under, and many of the survivors are struggling. Most remaining social interaction has been pushed to social media, which at its best is a weak substitute for face-to-face human interaction. Even ardent supporters of mask-wearing can’t deny that they stifle communication, verbal and nonverbal. When was the last time you saw someone smile in public?

Some restrictions were perhaps unavoidable, even prudent measures to slow the spread of COVID-19, but the restrictions have clearly harmful side effects. Our government has deliberately fragmented society to protect ourselves from a disease.

What are the unintended consequences of allowing government to overwhelm civil society, even for good reasons?

The closest parallel in recent history to prolonged social distancing may be the atomization of societies under totalitarian regimes. Totalitarian regimes usually take power during periods of massive social and political upheaval, and they must perpetuate the upheaval through reigns of terror in order to retain power. This completely isolates the individual, subjecting him or her to the full power of the central government to prevent any coherent political opposition from forming. Intervening institution such as families, churches, schools, media, unions, and political parties are co-opted or eliminated. Local and regional governments, the military, and the police are brought under central control. Any legislative and judicial bodies are either dissolved or converted into rubberstamps for the ruler, whether one man (e.g., Hitler) or an oligarchy (e.g., the Soviet and Chinese politburos).

The net result is no one can truly trust anyone in a totalitarian state. Against such overwhelming state power, the isolated individual cannot stand. The individual does not matter. He or she must either submit, take a fun-filled vacation to a “re-education camp,” or die.

This contrasts sharply with American democratic society. Aristotle observed, “Man is by nature a social animal,” and American society demonstrates that truth in spades. Alexis de Tocqueville wrote:

Americans of all ages, all conditions, and all dispositions, constantly form associations. They have not only commercial and manufacturing companies, in which all take part, but associations of a thousand other kinds – religious, moral, serious, futile, extensive, or restricted, enormous or diminutive. . .  Wherever, at the head of some new undertaking, you see the government in France, or a man of rank in England, in the United States you will be sure to find an association.

The strength of the United States lies in its people and their voluntary associations, not their government – regardless of how well organized or well run it may be.

The measures to combat the spread of COVID-19 may ultimately prove more harmful in the long term than the disease itself. Marriage rates in the U.S. have “dropped between 26% and 44% since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.” Deaths from drug overdoses reached a record high. More adults have seriously considered suicide. Preventative medical care has understandably taken a back seat to dealing with the coronavirus, but the payment will come due in reduced health for some, possibly resulting in otherwise avoidable deaths.

Educators now routinely refer to the “lost year” of K–12 instruction in which children fell far behind, despite “distance learning.” Even worse, many abused children are likely suffering in silence because teachers don’t see them in school and therefore can’t report suspected cases of abuse or neglect.

The pandemic’s indirect toll on physical and mental health may never be known, but we know the devastating results of social fragmentation: Russia is still trying to recover from the effects of Soviet totalitarianism (e.g., rampant alcoholism, declining life expectancy, and a shrinking population).

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PETITION UPDATE (8/27/2020)

Thank you for continuing to SIGN and SHARE this petition, which asks policymakers at all levels of government to reverse mandatory mask orders within their borders.

Facebook has restored the share link for this petition, saying that the decision to block it was a 'mistake...'

Please share with your Facebook friends, but we should all take heed of this warning: when an organization or individuals have to beg, plead and cajole just to express objective truths, it may be time to start looking for other social networking platforms.

Facebook needs to treat its users with respect, no matter their political persuasion. Moreover, Facebook needs to treat objective reality and facts with more respect.

One-size-fits-all oppressive government mask mandates must stop!

Healthy adults and children should not be forced - by the state - to wear masks when the risk of infection is low and the benefit of wearing a mask is highly questionable.

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PETITION UPDATE (8/25/2020)

Facebook is actively censoring this petition, saying that some people find it 'abusive.'

How anyone could find alternate facts about oppressive mask mandates 'abusive' is incredible...that is, impossible to believe.

This is exactly the kind of censorship which Big Tech is getting a bad reputation for.

The fact that Facebook calls differing opinion and objective reality "abusive" says a lot about Facebook and their agenda to silence reason and logic, not just conservatives and Christians.

But, people are more intelligent than Facebook give them credit for.

And, the more this continues, the more reasonable people will look alternate platforms to share their thoughts and connect with their friends and family. The more that happens, the less revenue Facebook will generate.

All of us have a decision to make, and the time is coming where we might have to tell our Facebook friends that we are moving to another platform.

We are encouraging people to continue SIGNING this petition and SHARING it via other platforms such as Parler and Gab, and to share the link below with your family and friends on Whatsapp, Telegram, Threema and Signal.

Thank you!

________________________________________________________________________________________

One-size-fits-all oppressive government mask mandates must stop!

Healthy adults and children should not be forced - by the state - to wear masks when the risk of infection is low and the benefit of wearing a mask is highly questionable.

Please SIGN this petition which asks policymakers at all levels of government to reverse mandatory mask mandates within their borders

Public health policies should be based on science and logic, not on the type of political posturing and virtue-signaling which led Joe Biden to recently call for a national mask mandate.

And, public health policies certainly shouldn't lead to a situation where more people could become sick.

But, that is exactly what these mandatory mask mandates are doing.

Here are four inconvenient facts about masks:

1) Masks** are largely ineffective at stopping the transmission of viruses.

The vast majority of masks worn by the public are made from material which cannot filter-out viruses because virus particles are too small to catch or obstruct.  Wearing cloth masks to stop a virus is like putting a bee in a bird cage to keep it from flying away.

Wearing a mask for long periods of time ensures that the wearer has a warm and moist receptacle around his or her mouth, on which viruses and bacteria can land and accumulate.

Thus, masks are actually likely to have little effect in stopping the spread of COVID-19 acting as a barrier, but could actually make things worse acting as a receptacle.

2) Mandates which call for masks to be worn outdoors are both absurd and oppressive.

3) There are clearly documented hazards of wearing masks for long periods of time.

4) And, since school is on everyone's mind...

Notwithstanding the above information on the ineffectiveness of most masks against viruses, we don't know if asymptomatic children can even transmit the virus.

But, it was a reported in an article in the July 21, 2020 Uk Times that: "There has been no recorded case of a teacher catching the coronavirus from a pupil anywhere in the world, according to one of the UK government's leading scientific advisers."

And, we also know that children are extremely unlikely to get seriously ill or die from COVID infections. In any case, children cannot possibly be expected to wear a mask properly in a way that would cut transmission.

There are still a lot of unknowns about COVID-19, but we have grown in our understanding of this disease since the beginning of the crisis.

The knowledge we have gained should allow government and health authorities to make more nuanced policies than the current one-size-fits-all mask mandates.

Where are the legislative hearings in county commissions, and state, provincial or federal legislatures before these drastic actions are mandated? Where are the open and transparent debates among experts that provide our representatives with the necessary information to make good policy decisions?

The real pandemic is the panic and the resulting tyranny that is being caused by dictatorial governors, corporate media and the monopolistic Big Tech.

The truth is that COVID-19 is like a bad cold for most people; this is not ebola or the plague.

Of course, the very elderly and those with serious health conditions should take precautions or be quarantined, but the rest of society should begin the long process of returning to normality.

The frenzy to force everyone to wear a mask, at all times, has gone beyond all comprehension, and goes against science and logic.

Please SIGN this petition which asks policymakers at all levels of government to reverse any mandatory mask order within the borders of their county, state, province, or country.

Thank you!

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

'Explosion in mandatory masking isn’t driven by science, but fear', PART I - https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/explosion-in-mandatory-masking-isnt-driven-by-science-but-fear

'Explosion in mandatory masking isn’t driven by science, but fear', PART II - https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/explosion-in-mandatory-masking-isnt-driven-by-science-but-fear-part-ii

OSHA Document on Surgical Masks and Respirators stating that surgical masks do NOT prevent airborne particles (e.g. viruses) from being inhaled - https://www.osha.gov/Publications/OSHA3219.pdf

'PETER HITCHENS: Face masks turn us into voiceless submissives - and it’s not science forcing us to wear them, it’s politics' - https://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-8537489/PETER-HITCHENS-Face-masks-turn-voiceless-submissives.html

**Here, we are referring to the masks worn by the vast majority of the public, not to specialist masks or respirator-type masks.

***Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

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Looking at the collateral damage to society and the individual in the United States, it’s reasonable to reassess whether our leaders have chosen wisely. The government’s response to the pandemic has taken giant steps toward centralizing control of some very basic personal decisions – an extreme of government intervention into their personal lives that Americans would have considered unimaginable and absolutely intolerable before the pandemic.

Once given a power, even “temporarily,” government rarely surrenders new power willingly. Those in power either find ways to prolong the crisis and their power, or they discover new crises that justify maintaining and expanding their centralized power. With the pandemic apparently waning, would-be benevolent despots are already finding other crises – such as fighting climate change – to justify continuing their control.

Reprinted with permission from the American Thinker.

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