‘This whole thing has become politics’: Inside Missouri’s Kovid culture wars Missouri

T.He climbed the storefront of Rai Cafe in Blue Springs, Missouri, Does not look like the Battle of Covid-1 battle परंतु but it has been the cause of the anti-masking movement since Malta’s Amanda Vohletz launched a campaign in July to violate the local Jackson County Mask Order imposed after the Delta variant infection escalated.

Despite warnings, quotes, revocation of food licenses and orders from the county health department to close its doors, Vohletz persisted, claiming in court that everyone between the ages of five and older must cover their face when visiting public places in the home. Unconstitutionally created ”and attempts to enforce it were“ illegal, futile ”.

The restaurant is now closed. In the September 23 decision, A county judge rejected Walletz’s medical waiver argument and said the restaurant could change the order by acting as a private club. The judge ordered Rai to suspend work until he received a valid food license.

Welcome to Missouri’s Covid Culture Wars.

This Republican-led midwestern state was hit hard by the epidemic and early, and again by a more contagious type of delta wave. Thousands have been infected.

Although there are rates now Going down While the delta wave is receding, the state’s population is just that 48.18% fully vaccinated. Winter is coming and new forms are coming, health officials are now worried that the cultural wars that have erupted in Missouri and other parts of the United States will keep the state insecure again as the next wave arrives.

In the heat of the sometimes bizarre battle over masks, commands and vaccines, many observers fear that the personal beliefs of the Missouri people, often fed by false information and fed by religious convictions, are being reaped for political gain.

At the top of the list is Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmidt. A Republican running for the US Senate.

Schmidt has sued China for “irreparable damage, sickness, death, economic disruption and human suffering to countries around the world” due to Covid-19, and recently launched a class-action lawsuit against local school districts throughout Missouri to prevent them from making mask policies. Try.

“Forcing children to wear masks all day at school, flying in front of science and removing facial expressions and expressions can hinder significant development,” Schmidt said last month.

On Tuesday, the judge rejected Schmidt’s request to close public schools in Boone County, including the city of Columbia, and step up lawsuits against every school district in the state that requires a mask.

Health officials say the twists and turns in their fight against Kovid-1 are complicated by political interpretation and sanctification.

St. Louis County’s director of public health, Dr. Faisal Khan, is at war with Schmidt over Mask’s orders, who have repeatedly challenged their legitimacy and enforcement, including in the state’s largest city.

“Trying to tie public health hands is always a bad idea,” Khan told the Guardian. “Our focus is on the protection of the people and my appeal is not to politicize the public health crisis. It is a respiratory infection, nothing more, and it has nothing to do with what it means to have abusive behavior in controlling individual freedoms or personal rights. ”

At a July council meeting, Khan was allegedly beaten by a mob of anti-masks and later underwent treatment described in a. Letter Complaint of “racist, xenophobic and threatening”.

He said, “The lingering feeling that I have is the sadness of how the public health crisis has been used by unscrupulous individuals across the country at every level and given a political flavor to it.” “This is detrimental to our global cause which is to fight the epidemic. The ignorance of those who choose politics over science will manifest itself. ”

Opposition to masking in personal and official capacity is a highly emotional issue. It is also the one that divides the country from the city and the urban district from the district, from business to business.

“Anti-mask businesses say nothing and they won’t do anything,” said IT consultant Arthur, who declined to fully identify any statements on politically read issues on this basis. “Pro-maskers are more aggressive, seeking argument and execution.”

But despite the fact that masks are mandatory, many businesses have instructed employees not to face customers who do not wear masks.

The consequences are obvious to some. “A lot of kids are catching it and can’t go to school,” said Tim Agnew, who was waiting for a bus in Forest Park. “Wearing a mask doesn’t bother me, but there are a lot of people who haven’t been vaccinated and they say [has] It contains all kinds of chemicals. ”

Outside the Rye Cafe, Wohletz supporter Merle Miller was selling electric ionizers, which he claimed could destroy airborne viruses.

“I think this whole cowardly thing has become politics. We used to choose people to help us, ”he said. Asked if political masked battles would be reduced to another kind of spike, Miller said the political-religious line of discussion was “probably” before it descended into the sales pitch and was based on the principles of American God.

“When all this fuss goes on, I think: God, please take me home. I am ready to meet Jesus. ”

Leota Guevara, a server at the local Waffle House, said Wohletz has pushed her anti-government stance too far. “She liked the attention, and got a lot of support, but then she lost her business. I don’t see how much it can cost. Not only that, but her staff lost their jobs. ”

But on Reds Gas, 100 miles west and deep in the agricultural country of Missouri, Becky Craven expressed a different ideology and her anti-authoritarian beliefs remained firm.

People in the cities, Craven said, just wanted to pull the wool over their eyes and believe the government is looking for them. “They are all sheep. They want to believe that the government is looking for them. The truth is that no one is looking for them anymore and this is all politics. ”

Next week, during statewide anti-mask legal action, St. Louis will hold a council hearing on whether to accept a new or re-indoor mask order.

“We understand Kovid fatigue and people are frustrated by the never-ending constraint of restrictions,” Dr Khan said. “But public health is not the enemy, it is the virus, and our strategy is based on the changing dynamics of the battlefield. Standing in these lawsuits, as they are frivolous, will only hinder our fight because we have no idea what this epidemic is all about three months from now or a month from now. ”

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