Letter to the Editor: ‘Our Freedoms Have Never Been Absolute’

Few countries value individual freedoms as much as this one. However, those freedoms have always come with limitations.

We have freedom of speech, but not to shout “Fire!” in a crowded movie theater. We have freedom to bear arms, but not to engage in target practice with our deer rifles in a crowded urban area. We have freedom to drive our vehicles, but not to drive 100 mph down a crowded city street.

This is why I have a hard time figuring out those people who argue that their freedoms are somehow violated when they’re asked to wear face coverings in public places. Our freedoms have never been absolute. When an individual’s freedoms present a danger to other people, those freedoms have been – and should be – restricted.

Wearing a mask is not just about protecting the mask wearer; it’s also to protect everyone who comes in contact with that person. If President Trump had encouraged responsible behavior and more people had practiced responsible behavior, COVID-19 rates would be dropping rather than rising.

Then we wouldn’t be debating whether it’s safe for schools to reopen, and sports seasons could be conducted in a more normal manner. 

With all this nonsense about the freedom to not wear masks, I keep expecting to see a T-shirt that says, “I will wear a mask when they tie it on my cold, dead head.”

 Charles Frisk

Green Bay, Wisconsin