Opinion

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Facing Main

Wear a Mask

It’s an expression of consideration and compassion, a proven measure that keeps you and others safe

A friend of mine told me: Wearing a mask shows that I care about you. Wearing a mask should be nothing more than an expression of consideration and compassion. Wearing a mask should be the first step in helping to contain the wildfire-like spread of the coronavirus. Wearing a mask should be a symbol for concern and care, knowing that this simple step of prevention directly save lives. Wearing a mask is like donning a superhero cape, only instead of having the ability to fly or stop a speeding train, your power lies in keeping others healthy.

As my 4-year-old son says, while he wears a mask and his bandana turned superhero cape, how cool is that?

Indeed. How cool is it that with a few simple measures, like practicing physical distancing and wearing a face covering, we can be everyday superheroes? And just like those fancy and shiny superhero outfits, we have lots of options for stylish and fun masks. My mom, mask maker extraordinaire, sifted through her fabric collection to curate designs to suit each person in my household. Charlie has his construction worker mask with prints of giant bulldozers and excavators. My husband’s mask is adorned with all things science lab, including beakers and test tubes. He loves wearing this one at the brewery.

What isn’t cool is the explosive spike in COVID-19 cases in Montana and across the country. We are nowhere near containing the virus, and it’s already been an exhausting journey so far. Yet we know what we can do to help stop the spread and keep others safe. We stay distant and we wear masks. It’s not a political gesture or threat. It never should have been in the first place, but sadly we lack national leadership that could have better prepared and directed us for this catastrophe.

Wearing a mask is not a daunting undertaking or a major sacrifice. It’s a proven measure that keeps you and others safe. I wear a mask because my grandmother is 91 years old and I’m determined that when it’s safe to travel again, she can return to her home on an island in Lake Huron. I wear a mask because I want my family to be healthy and for my children to know that I care about my community, even the people I don’t know. I wear a mask for my employees, many of whom are at a greater risk as servers interacting with the public and I don’t want them to get sick.

I wear a mask because I care about you.

Maggie Doherty is the owner of Kalispell Brewing Company on Main Street.