Over the past several days, four Democrat governors have announced plans to repeal their states’ school mask requirements, marking a massive shift in Covid policy for the party that spent the past year attempting to muzzle those least at risk for the respiratory virus.
According to The Daily Mail, “[T]he decisions in Connecticut, Delaware, New Jersey and Oregon were announced as state and local governments grapple with which virus restrictions to jettison and which ones to keep in place,” with the changes coming “amid a growing sense that the virus is never going to go away and Americans need to find a way to coexist with it.”
“We are not — and I´ve said this many times — going to manage COVID to zero,” said New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, whose state mandate will remain in effect until March 7. “We have to learn how to live with COVID as we move from a pandemic to an endemic phase of this virus.”
Individual school districts will still be permitted to continue masking requirements after the state mandate expires, however.
Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont recommended ending his state’s school mask mandates by Feb. 28, while Delaware and Oregon’s Democrat leadership announced plans to let their mandates expire on March 31.
“We’re in a much better place than we were several weeks ago,” said Delaware Gov. John Carney in a series of tweets. “We have the tools to keep ourselves and each other safe. Get vaccinated. Get your booster. That’s especially important for children, where we continue to see low rates of vaccination.”
Democrats’ sycophants in legacy media have also shifted their talking points on masking children. In the Tuesday edition of The New York Times, senior writer David Leonhardt notes how “studies — in Florida and in England, for example,” found that masking students had “little effect on caseloads.”
“Of course, the costs of mandates may also be small for many children, especially older ones. For others, though, the costs seem larger,” writes Leonhardt. “NPR’s Anya Kamenetz has cataloged them: Students can’t always understand teachers; young children, unable to see faces in classrooms, may not be developing emotional skills; and children of all ages are having a harder time making connections.”
“For reasons like this, Europe’s infectious disease agency does not recommend masking for children under 12, and many countries avoid masking preschoolers. The U.S. stands out for its aggressive use of masks on young children,” he added.
The left’s newfound inclination to unmask schoolchildren, however, is a remarkable development considering the treatment they gave Republican governors for doing the same thing. Since taking office last month, Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin has faced a series of hysterical attacks from Democrats after he issued an executive order giving parents the power to decide whether they want their children to wear masks in school.
On Jan. 24, The Washington Post Editorial Board published an opinion berating Youngkin for the order, saying the governor is “pandering to a minority of parents who regard mask mandates as an infringement on their liberty.”
“The governor, who took office on Jan.15, chose to fan the flames of a culture war. As a middle-ground position, he could have rescinded the order of his predecessor, Democrat Ralph Northam, while leaving the decision on mask mandates to school districts themselves,” the board wrote. “Instead, he has fomented chaos across the commonwealth, with parents protesting outside schools and students arriving without masks, only to be disciplined or, in some instances, prevented from attending class by school officials.”
“If and when covid-19 cases spike again, forcing school closures, the governor will share the blame,” it added.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki also went after Youngkin, tweeting her thanks to Arlington Public Schools after the district said it would refuse to abide by the governor’s order.
“Hi there. Arlington county parent here (don’t believe you are @GlennYoungkin but correct me if I am wrong),” she wrote. “Thank you to @APSVirginia for standing up for our kids, teachers and administrators and their safety in the midst of a transmissible variant.”
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has also been subjected to harassment from leftists for his barring of mask mandates in schools, with MSNBC legal analyst Glenn Kirschner even going so far as to lay the death of an immunocompromised Florida teacher at his feet.
“Trump, Kushner & Pence may now be joined as negligent homicide candidates by DeSantis: vulnerable 5th grade school teach dies after contracting COVID apparently in FLA classroom, thanks to DeSantis’ outlawing school mask mandates,” he wrote in an August 2021 tweet.
Despite Kirschner’s claim, nobody can know whether she contracted Covid-19 in her classroom.
Let the Gaslighting Commence
The sudden 180 and total hypocrisy in school masking policy can be traced back to the changing political winds in the country. With more than two-thirds of Americans saying they’ve accepted that Covid is here to stay and are ready to move on with life, the left desperately needs to ease America back toward some semblance of normalcy before the 2022 midterms to avoid a potential electoral landslide for Republicans.
After spending a year and a half demonizing conservatives such as Youngkin and DeSantis for attempting to follow the data and unmask children, Democrats are now looking to cast themselves as noble saviors who have come to free America’s youth from the agony of having to wear a Chinese face-diaper at school.
Despite all the gaslighting, parents know who kept their kids muzzled for months on end and send those responsible to the unemployment line where they belong.