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Masks Will Be Mandatory in Much of Denver Starting May 6EXPAND
Michelle Baldwin

Masks Will Be Mandatory in Much of Denver Starting May 6

Starting May 6, face coverings will be mandatory in certain parts of Denver, under a public-health order that Mayor Michael Hancock and the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment issued on May 1.

“When we’re at the grocery store, work or any other business, my face covering protects you and your face covering protects me,” Hancock said in announcing the order. “The virus isn’t going away any time soon. By wearing a face covering, you're doing your part to reduce the spread of infections and keep everyone safer.”

Under this order, residents and employees will be required to wear face coverings while inside of, or waiting in line to enter, certain businesses — including any retail or commercial business. They'll also be required at bus stops and other outside areas where people might gather.

The new order takes effect two days before Denver's stay-at-home edict is set to end, on May 8. There is no word yet on when restaurants might be able to reopen, or under what rules.

Over the past month, masks have been the focus of much heated discussion concerning when and where to wear them. Hancock's new order will clear up some confusion...but it won't stop the complaints and controversy.

Says Bill: 

Making mask-wearing mandatory after a two-month pandemic is like putting on a condom after she’s already pregnant.

Responds Dean:

For weeks, I've been working ten-hours shifts while wearing a mask. It's not a big deal.

Counters Robert:

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 I don't wear a mask, and think people who wear them are somewhat gullible and really easy to sway using fear tactics. If the media started telling people that wearing a cone made out of aluminum foil will prevent their thoughts from being read by satellites, you would see aluminum cone hats come the next day. Unfortunately, this is the world we are living in. 

Replies Melody:

 I'm reminded of the AIDS epidemic when the virus was a death sentence before there was an effective treatment, and there were a number of people who refused to wear condoms despite this. Now using condoms is more acceptable and expected. But people seem to think they are inviolate and don't care if they get or spread COVID-19, and it is far easier to spread than AIDS.

Scientists have recently speculated the coronavirus can live in the air for up to two hours. This message has been public for some time now, yet the vast majority seem not to care. It's not always fatal like AIDS used to be, but there is always that risk. Would you have sex with a stranger without a condom? True, masks can't protect you from getting the virus, but they can retard the ability to spread it. Has our society disintegrated to the point no one cares anymore if our actions cause someone to die? Glove up, folks!

Comments Pat:

I have this piece of paper that says I’m free to do what I please. It’s a little old, though: It was dated 1776. If you’re scared, stay the fuck at home.

Concludes Dane:

 The amount of butt hurt over something as simple as wearing a mask blows my mind. 

According to the city, residents need to take this new face-covering order seriously, as they did the stay-at-home order. "Multiple agencies will be involved in enforcement," according to the announcement, " with the goal of compliance and keeping everyone safe through education."

What do you think about masks? The city's new policy? Post a comment or email your thoughts to editorial@westword.com.

See our slideshow of colorful Colorado masks here.

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