What are Most El Pasoans Doing with the New Mask Rules?
Last week, the CDC announced that Americans who have been fully vaccinated can now go maskless in MOST indoor as well as outdoor settings.
“Great”, I thought. “I’ve gotten both doses and it’ll be nice not to have to mask up all the time anymore”.
“I’ve EARNED this”, I naively thought.
Of course, we’ve since learned that the “mask freedom” announcement isn’t quite as “across-the-board” as it was presented. You’re still required to mask up if you’re on a plane, in a hospital, in cities, counties or states that have their OWN guidelines and basically anytime you’re somewhere that someone says “Wear a mask”. Honestly, I’m not even sure what the ACTUAL policy is in my own workplace. Sure, we got the CDC announcement AND we received an e-mail from our corporate head of HR confirming that we’d follow that guidance. That’s our OFFICIAL policy but not our ACTUAL policy. I know this because if I walk down a hallway without a mask I can tell that people are looking at me like I just committed a hate crime. Also, I was just in a meeting where 5 fully vaccinated adults ALL wore masks. So, clearly, there’s some dissonance going on here.
I really didn’t go out into the wider world until this weekend. I was unsure if most places would or wouldn’t require masks. Here’s what I found out:
Most stores still have their “Mask required” signs up. Whether this is still their policy or if they just haven’t gotten around to removing the signs is unknown.
I only went to one of the malls a two other stores. I don’t know what the bars were like.
I didn’t see a single argument about masks going on.
Most people that I saw WERE wearing masks. People going from their parked car were putting on their masks before they even got to the door of the mall or store.
Based on this I guess I’m going to continue to carry a mask with me at all times, just in case. If it looks like people are wearing masks, I’ll be ready. If the store has a mask policy still in place, I’ll be ready. If NOBODY’S wearing a mask…I’ll STILL be ready (meaning I just won’t wear it. Unless somebody says I should. Or gives me a weird look. I’m really just trying to avoid any hassle at this point).
But it would be nice not to have to worry about it.