We previously discussed the double-talk from the administration of Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on the issue of masks. Are they required or not?
Getting a straight answer from anyone with any sort of authority – either the Governor himself or Health Secretary Rachel Levine – is basically impossible.
Instead of giving a simple yes or no answer, anyone asking usually gets a lecture on the importance of masks. That’s the importance of masks, according to them, of course.
You can do a simple internet search on whether cloth face masks are effective at preventing anything and you’ll get conflicting results. One doctor says yes. Another says no. Some even say they’re more dangerous than not wearing a mask.
Remember, the pandemic response started in March. But the masking order from the Health Dept. didn’t go into effect until April 21.
Well, on Monday, we finally got a straight answer from the Governor on this … kinda.
Are Pennsylvania Businesses Required to Make Customers Wear Face Masks?
Since that order came down from above, the big question is whether stores must require customers to wear a face mask to shop.
OUR ORIGINAL REPORT ON THE TOPIC: Are Masks Really Mandatory in Pennsylvania? Probably Maybe
When you go to any store around Schuylkill County, you’ll see signs on the front door requiring masks to enter — No Mask, No Service.
Now, are store owners doing this because they believe it keeps other customers safe? Or are they doing this because they believe it’s the law?
Considering how divisive an issue face masks have become, you’d think that stores would prefer to not require them. If someone wants to wear a mask, they can. If not, surely the store owner would not want to get in the way of a paying customer who just wants to pop in, spend their money, and leave.
But store owners tend to believe – because they’ve been told so by someone – that face masks are required of their customers. They’d rather not find out what the penalty is for not requiring customers to wear one. Some stores have gotten militant over it.
Finally, A Straight-ish Answer on Face Masks in Pennsylvania
If Governor Wolf were in touch with the general public outside of a race protest, he’d recognize how this issue is dividing Pennsylvania right now.
It’s so divisive that he got another question about it on Monday during his latest press conference. And in classic Tom Wolf fashion, he lectured the media and the public on why he thinks masks are important.
However, Wolf did give one straight answer that business owners will surely want to hear.
Here’s the question posed to him at Monday’s presser:
On social media, you said earlier today that masks are required. Previously you’ve said they’re recommended. Is there a difference in the guidance on masks going forward for entering a business?
Wolf responded with his most direct answer yet on the topic.
“Uhhh, they’re not required,” he said.
So … there it is. In relatively plain English: “They’re not required.”
But wait, there’s more.
He added, “Uhhh, let me make sure I say this right because I’m not a lawyer, I’m not sure.”
We get that he’s not a lawyer. And if he keeps this up, he won’t be Governor much longer, either.
Also, you may not want to take our word for it on this topic. We, like the Governor, do not possess a law degree. Maybe consult your lawyer first.
But he definitely did say this …
Watch his full answer to the question Monday (as captured in this video clip posted by State Rep. Russ Diamond):
With Every Non-Answer on Face Mask Requirements Comes a Lecture
But while he still occupies the Governor’s office, he still uses his pulpit for a lecture. And on Monday, he offered up this latest confusing advice on face masks.
He said, “Whether they’re required or not though, let me just put a plug in for wearing masks. Uh, the mask protects other people. Obviously, if you’re yelling, I think we’re learning more about that, that they’re less effective. But just general conversation, if you’re in a room with somebody else or you’re close to somebody else, you actually are doing them a favor by wearing a mask.”
Cool story, bro. But at this point, that’s just one person’s opinion on the topic. Again, you can find plenty of opinions to the contrary.
He concluded his “answer” to the question posed Monday by saying, “So, (chuckling) we’ll find out what the legality is, but we really ought to be wearing masks. And stores should be requiring that of their customers.”
Then, he tried equating the face mask non-requirement with another popular retail policy.
“Uh, (shrugs shoulders) they do that with shirts and shoes, they certainly should be able to do it with masks to try to keep their other customers safe,” Wolf concluded.
Business Rules vs. The Law
He’s wrong on the shirts and shoes policy. Stores don’t want people coming in topless and shoeless because it’s gross. If stores want to require customers to remove their hats or wear a sports coat or a tie, that’s their prerogative. There are no laws on any of those.
If a business wants to make it their rule that customers must wear face masks, that should be their call, not his.
And based on his answer to the question today, it appears that’s what it is – the business owner’s decision. But is it too late to go back? Have business owners already been groomed into thinking that masks work and worse, that they’re required by law?
What Wolf is trying to do here by lecturing instead of governing is condition the public on face masks. If he gets his way, the face mask “requirement” will never end, even long after the virus is just an afterthought.
Remember, the Green phase of his pandemic response plan is all about conditioning the public for his so-called “new normal” in Pennsylvania. And there’s no plan for after the Green phase because he doesn’t plan on letting go of the presumed power he wields over the entire state right now. If he can do this with face masks, what’s next?
MORE UPDATES ON MASKS IN PENNSYLVANIA:
On July 1, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf said Health Secretary Rachel Levine signed an order making face masks mandatory in all public places in the state.
Masks are required in Pennsylvania when you’re:
- “Outdoors and unable to consistently maintain a distance of 6 feet from individuals who are not members of their household.”
- “In any indoor location where members of the public are generally permitted.”
- “Waiting for, riding on, driving, or operating public transportation or paratransit or while in a taxi, private car service or ride-sharing vehicle.”
- “Obtaining services from the healthcare sector in settings including, but not limited to a hospital, pharmacy, medical clinic, laboratory, physician, or dental office, veterinary clinic, or blood bank.”
- “Engaged in work, whether at the workplace or performing work off-site, when interacting in-person with any member of the public, working in any space visited by members of the public, working in any space where food is prepared or packaged for sale or distribution to others, working in or walking through common areas, or in any room or enclosed area where other people, except for members of the person’s own household or residence, are present when unable to physically distance.”
READ MORE: Wolf Now Requires Masks in ALL Public Places
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- The Green Phase is NOT the Goal – Wolf Conditioning for a “New Normal”
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- Tom Wolf Virtue Signals at Harrisburg Black Lives Matter Protest, Violates Own Pandemic Restrictions
- Time for Pennsylvania Business Owners to “Take a Real Gamble” and Reopen
- UPDATE (June 16): Now, Wolf Kinda Says Masks are Required in Pennsylvania
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