Masking has been such a ridiculous part of the whole Covid-19 controversy, that really, we should all be ashamed. The fight, especially in light of the now raging Ukraine struggle over retaining their actually endangered freedoms, has been a petty squabble from start to (hopefully soon) finish. One of the most long-lasting problems involved though, is the fact that so many people seem to be walking out of stores, tearing off their mask as if declaring freedom, and then throwing it on the ground. There it stays as a gross piece of litter that no one wants to touch.
Littering is littering, no matter what your political values are. Most of us grow up learning that you aren’t supposed to throw things like Kleenex, and napkins on the ground when you’re done with them. So, why are so many people acting like spoiled children when it comes to their masks? It doesn’t matter if you love or hate them, at the end of the day, they are still your responsibility.
With mask mandates either lessening, or ending in various parts of the world, the reality still remains that masks will continue to be a part of our lives for a while to come. If you go into a hospital, doctor’s office, or use public transport then you will still be required to wear one. If the infection rates start to climb again, due to a new variant popping up (and I think we can all agree to hope that this doesn’t happen), then you will need to mask up once again. Regardless of why it might be needed, your reaction to having to wearing it should not, and cannot, include tossing it on the ground once done.
All of the free N95, and KN95 masks that the government is now handing out, via local stores and pharmacies, are all disposable. Please use them when required/needed, and then properly dispose of them. Regardless of what is happening to us right now, the world, as a whole, simply can’t afford for us to toss yet another item into the ecosystem. I know that all those masks going into the trashcan isn’t great either; but it’s a far better fate then all them all winding up on the ground, where they can eventually be blown into storm drains or wildlife areas. This is so easily avoided, shame on us if we don’t do our best to do so.
Please, be the better version of yourself, and show your care of the world around you by doing your part. In this case, it isn’t even hard to do. The Earth will thank you.