No logic whatsoever in masks on NJ school buses (Opinion)
When it was announced Gov. Murphy would end the mask mandate for schools on March 7 a lot of people were quite happy. The happiness didn’t last long. It soon came to light that while students would no longer be under state orders to wear masks all day in school, they would still be required to wear them riding the bus.
You. have. got. to. be. kidding. me.
Michael Symon’s article explains this order is not coming from Phil Murphy or anyone from his administration. It’s not coming from the state.
Back in January of 2021 the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued an order that people using public transportation, airports, train stations, bus terminals and, yes, school buses had to wear a mask. (They can do that? This didn’t take an act of Congress or an executive order from the president? If the CDC orders us to brush thrice daily and floss are we required to obey?)
So, because this is coming from a federal order and federal trumps state, the state says there’s nothing they can do. That even though students will not be required by the state to wear masks in school all day they will still have to wear one when on the bus.
Let me phrase it differently to point out how absurd this is.
Even though students will spend many hours with no masks around a lot of the same kids they ride the bus with, when they sit on the bus a mask must sit on their face. Think about that. If the virus that causes COVID-19 has had six or seven hours to infect them what good is this mask possibly going to do?
Now if you’re wondering how the state could drop the mask requirement when the CDC is on record saying it’s a bad idea that’s because masking in schools is only guidance. It’s only recommended by the CDC, whereas masking on buses is a rule.
Next, if you’re wondering if New Jersey really has to follow this CDC bus rule, well I’m wondering the same thing. After all, isn’t marijuana still a Schedule 1 substance under the Controlled Substances Act? Yet didn’t we legalize it anyway? Didn’t we defy the feds on that one? Why are we going to listen to only some federal rules but not others?
Look, I don’t even care where you stand on the mask issue. Doesn’t matter. If they are not going to be worn in school there’s absolutely no benefit to them being worn on school buses. This is as dumb as government gets.
Could we expect anything less in the Garden State?
Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Jeff Deminski only.
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