Joyce Warshaw, mayor and commissioner of Dodge City, Kansas is relinquishing her elective duties. From her resignation letter:
“It is with a heavy heart that I am submitting this letter of resignation from the commission and the mayorship effective immediately today, December 15, 2020. Life has dealt out many challenges in our world that have perhaps caused many people to act inappropriately but I do not feel safe in this position anymore and am hopeful in removing myself this anger, accusations and abuse will not fall on anyone else and will calm down.”
Dodge City, like much of the country, is seeing a surge in COVID-19 infections, and Warshaw was one of the 5 commissioners who voted for the institution of a city-wide mask mandate in November. Kansas Governor Laura Kelly had previously issued a statewide mask mandate, but gave Counties the choice to opt out. Ford County, where Dodge City is seated, took that option; but with the increase in cases and deaths, the city commissioners and Mayor Warshaw felt like more drastic action needed to be taken.
Despite the newly-installed mandate, residents still do not bother to wear masks, and very few businesses are enforcing compliance. The residents have shown marked resistance, and even hostility, on adherence to it.
Warshaw was interviewed in USA Today to discuss this resistance, and she expressed criticism of the lack of mask discipline, and pointed to the increased spread of COVID in Dodge City to lack of mask compliance.
However, in places like Los Angeles, where people and businesses are dictatorial about mask compliance, the same surge is happening. My colleague Bonchie puts a finer point on the worship of masks as the only solution to stopping the spread of COVID:
“Masks are simply not an effective mitigation method for the public, both because of their inherent inabilities to stop the virus in the first place and because the general public will never have the right kinds of masks (i.e. a professional N95), sanitized the right way, and worn the right way continually. Someone putting a cloth mask on every day is doing nothing but creating a petri dish for the virus and other illnesses to grow. It’s even worse to use a neck gaiter or bandana. That could be why we are seeing infections actually increase as mask usage has increased. That includes lots of blue states seeing big spikes right now (bigger than many red states with laxer guidelines) despite their precious mask mandates and lock downs.”
This cult-like fixation on mask mandates as a solution has got to stop, otherwise proper solutions that actually factor in actual science, will never be found.
The USA TODAY interview, along with Warshaw’s vote for the mask mandate, caused a backlash. From another USA TODAY article:
“Since the Dec. 11 publication of the USA TODAY story, Warshaw said she has been met with aggression, including threats via phone and email from Dodge City citizens. Some threatening emails have been turned over to police, she said.”
Warshaw is now getting the heck out of her official roles, but still plans to stay in Dodge City. She expressed gratitude and optimism in her letter of resignation.
“I will always call Dodge City home and hold the town and community in high esteem. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve this city and has given me some of the best memories of my life. Dodge City is a wonderful place to live, work, play and raise a family. I look forward to watching fellow commissioners continue to move this great community to even higher levels of success.”
Jake Tapper who is part of the crew that is under the delusion that you can control any virus, decided to weigh in:
Mayor of Dodge City resigns because hostility to the new mask requirement has caused folks to act “inappropriately” and “I do not feel safe in this position anymore.”https://t.co/8YmCS8sHCW
— Jake Tapper (@jaketapper) December 16, 2020
While peaceful protests and heated disagreement are part of a democratic process, threats of physical harm on someone else or their loved ones colors what should be a critical and essential discussion. Sadly, the subject of masks has become so poisoned and polarized that it’s next to impossible to get people to clearly discuss anything. The mayor and commission’s choice to follow the established mask mantra is sadly not unusual; when you have credible medical voices who could have better answers being silenced and marginalized, you tend to go with doing something, even if that something does not address the heart of the crisis.
Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin has been trying to give voice to these alternative medical voices and solutions. Sen. Johnson held two weeks of hearings on “Early Outpatient Treatment: An Essential Part of a COVID-19 Solution“. Testimony was given from practicing and published physicians who questioned the efficacy of the current methods used to control COVID-19 and offered proven solutions that not only slow the spread, but allow for treatment before it becomes critical enough for hospitalization or ventilators.
Maybe city, county, and state leaders should factor this type of information into their discussions and try implementation and encouragement of these methods before going to the knee-jerk solution of mask mandates, whose failure rate is being proven every day.