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PETER HITCHENS: Face masks turn us into voiceless submissives | Daily Mail Online

Posted by M. C. on July 20, 2020

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-8537489/PETER-HITCHENS-Face-masks-turn-voiceless-submissives.html

By Peter Hitchens for The Mail on Sunday

In the name of Covid, the State has already thrust itself into every corner of our existence.

It has come between husbands and wives at the ends of their lives. It has forbidden the old to embrace their grandchildren.

It has denied us funerals and weddings, locked the churches, silenced the ancient monastic music of cathedral choirs and prevented the free worship of God for the first time in 800 years, and banned us (unless we are Left-wing) from holding or attending public meetings.

It has ordered us to stay at home, scolded or fined us for sunbathing, going on country rambles or even entering our front gardens.

The Government began its wild, disproportionate shutdown of the country by spreading fear of a devastating plague that would destroy the NHS and kill untold thousands. Now, as many people find that Covid-19 is, in fact, nothing of the kind, new ways have to be found to keep up the alarm levels. Commuters are pictured above on the London Underground

The Government began its wild, disproportionate shutdown of the country by spreading fear of a devastating plague that would destroy the NHS and kill untold thousands. Now, as many people find that Covid-19 is, in fact, nothing of the kind, new ways have to be found to keep up the alarm levels. Commuters are pictured above on the London Underground

It has forced millions of us to stop working, sabotaged the educations – at school and university – of untold numbers of young people and has become our boss and paymaster in the biggest state takeover of life and work ever attempted by non-Communists.

Soon we will discover that it has also wrecked an already wobbly economy and separated untold numbers of us from jobs and businesses we thought were safe. Soon, too, it will also separate us from our savings, through punishing tax and savage inflation, to pay for the disaster it has caused.

Now it presumes to tell us what to wear. And what it wants us to wear is a soggy cloth muzzle, a face-nappy that turns its wearer from a normal human into a mumbling, mouthless submissive.

And this, it seems, is popular. Is there nothing the modern British people will not put up with? Britain’s muzzle consumption is now so high that six months from now there will be reports of dolphins and whales floundering about in an ocean made sticky by millions of gallons of hand-sanitiser, as they choke on congealed clumps of used muzzles. These items are set to become the new plastic bags.

Why is this frenzy taking place?

Here is a clue. On July 12, Deborah Cohen, the medical correspondent of BBC2’s Newsnight, revealed an astonishing thing. The World Health Organisation (WHO) had reversed its advice on face masks, from ‘don’t wear them’ to ‘do wear them’.

But the key fact was that it had not done so because of scientific information – the evidence had not backed the wearing of face coverings – but because of political lobbying.

She revealed on Twitter that: ‘We had been told by various sources [that the] WHO committee reviewing the evidence had not backed masks but they recommended them due to political lobbying.’ She said the BBC had then put this to the WHO, which did not deny it.

In March, the WHO had said: ‘There is currently no evidence that wearing a mask (whether medical or other types) by healthy persons in the wider community setting, including universal community masking, can protect them from infection with respiratory viruses, including Covid-19.’

The American TV news channel CNN reported on March 31 that Mike Ryan, executive director of the WHO health emergencies programme, had said at a briefing in Geneva: ‘There is no specific evidence to suggest that the wearing of masks by the mass population has any potential benefit.

‘In fact, there’s some evidence to suggest the opposite in the misuse of wearing a mask properly or fitting it properly.’

A few weeks ago, the WHO changed its advice to say it ‘advises that governments should encourage the general public to wear masks where there is widespread transmission and physical distancing is difficult, such as on public transport, in shops or in other confined or crowded environments.’

Earlier that same month, England’s chief medical officer, Chris Whitty, had said that wearing face masks would do little to combat the outbreak.

While noting that if someone was infected, they might reduce the danger of spreading the disease by covering their faces, Prof Whitty said wearing a face mask had almost no effect on reducing the risk of contracting the illness.

He stated: ‘In terms of wearing a mask, our advice is clear: that wearing a mask if you don’t have an infection reduces the risk almost not at all. So we do not advise that.’

People are seen walking down London's Oxford Street. There is plenty of research showing that the case for muzzles is poor, especially a survey done for the dental profession four years ago, which quietly vanished from the internet after mask opponents began to cite it

 

People are seen walking down London’s Oxford Street. There is plenty of research showing that the case for muzzles is poor, especially a survey done for the dental profession four years ago, which quietly vanished from the internet after mask opponents began to cite it

Also in March, the Advertising Standards Authority banned two firms’ advertisements for masks, saying that the adverts were ‘misleading, irresponsible and likely to cause fear without justifiable reason’.

At about the same time, Dr Jenny Harries, a Deputy Chief Medical Officer, warned that people could be putting themselves more at risk from contracting Covid by wearing muzzles. She said masks could ‘actually trap the virus’, and cause the person wearing it to breathe it in. She explained: ‘For the average member of the public walking down a street, it is not a good idea.’

On April 3, the other Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Professor Jonathan Van-Tam, said he did not believe healthy people wearing them would reduce the spread of the disease in the UK.

The British Government has also zig-zagged. Read the rest of this entry »

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