Matthew Jelalian 01

Matthew Jelalian poses for a portrait in the Daily Herald studio on Friday, March 6, 2015. SAMMY JO HESTER, Daily Herald

It seems to me that there are a lot of people who just decided the pandemic is over, even though it’s not.

And the worst part about all of that collective apathy is we could eliminate the need for so much of the worry if we just wore masks in public. But so many people refuse to do even that.

If you’re anti-mask, here are some reasons you should reconsider.

First, you should wear a mask because we know they work.

All of the evidence points to the conclusion that wearing a mask is probably the single most effective measure we can take to make things feel like normal again short of a vaccine or an effective cure.

If you’re a Democrat, you probably feel like you belong to the party of science. After all, you don’t deny climate change. Why are you going to deny the efficacy of the mask?

If you’re a Republican, you probably don’t think any part of the government can do their job except magically the police and the military. So when Dr. Fauci said, “We wanted to make sure that the people, namely the healthcare workers, who were brave enough to put themselves in harm’s way, to take care of people who you know were infected with the coronavirus and the danger of them getting infected,” you should be saying, “I knew it!”

And that should make you want to wear a mask just to spite the man.

Second, you should wear a mask because you value life.

Masks don’t do much to protect you, but they do a lot to protect other people. Your mask protects me, and my mask protects you.

It’s hard to say you’re pro-life when you can’t even be bothered to do something as simple as wear a mask in a pandemic that’s killed over 100,000 Americans in a few months.

Third, you should wear a mask because, unless you’re a military leader, the only people you might have the right to consider an “acceptable loss” are yourself and possibly your immediate family. Everyone else is off-limits from being voluntold to risk their lives getting groceries in exchange for your maskless comfort.

If, as a society, we find drunk driving laws to be reasonable because there’s a chance that a drunk person will kill someone behind the wheel, then it stands to reason that donning a mask is a reasonable expectation as well.

Fourth, wear a mask because black lives matter.

The movement for racial equality is important but the effort will be hampered if we don’t take all the precautions possible to save black lives whether they’re being pulled over by the police or in the picket line.

Fifth, wear a mask because all lives matter and a mask will not only protect a black life, but they’ll protect white people, Latino people, able people, disabled people, LGBT people, straight people, conservative people, liberal people, at-risk people, not at-risk people, religious people and non-religious people.

Again, wearing a mask is the bare minimum pro-life action you can take for all lives.

Sixth, you should wear a mask because, like a vaccine, masks work best when we all use them, and you’re not a nobody, which means you’re automatically included in the list of people who should put one on.

Seventh, you should wear a mask because if you catch the 'rona due to anti-mask sentiment, you might go to heaven and see all of your passed loved ones, but deep down you’ll always know that I was right. And that’s going to be an awfully telestial feeling to experience in the Celestial kingdom, if you know what I mean.

Eight, you should wear a mask because wearing a mask doesn’t mean you live in fear any more than washing your hands, brushing your teeth or wearing a seatbelt does. All it means is you’ve run the numbers and realized you’re better safe than sorry.

The real people who are living in fear are those who vehemently deny the risk of getting sick in the face of hundreds of people getting sick in Utah every day and thousands of people dying throughout the nation.

Those are the ones who can’t handle the reality of the situation.

Nine, you should wear a mask because, in your heart of hearts, you know it’s the right thing to do.

Three months ago, I bought a case of hand soap at Costco. My wife has a friend who had a hand sanitizer dealer (don’t ask), and my mom and I split up our Clorox wipes between her and my family.

For three months we haven’t bought cleaning supplies and just relied on what we had.

And now that we’re nearly out of cleaning supplies 3 months later, I still can’t find Clorox wipes or hand soap when I get groceries.

Let’s be real for a moment, panic shoppers can only buy so much cleaning supplies until they run out of money. It’s not panic shoppers buying all of the cleaning supplies, it’s the regular people who claim that not operating from a place of fear but still keep their shelves abnormally stocked.

It’s the people who swore they weren’t shopping at Costco but shop there nonetheless with a mask on their face.

Deep down, we realize that even with a high survival rate, 100,000 plus deaths is a devastating tragedy and we all need to do something to slow the death toll.

And something as simple as a cloth mask could help us do just that.

So long as we aren’t too scared to use it.