For roughly a year, communities across the nation have implemented mandates requiring Americans to wear face masks in public situations in an effort to “flatten the curve” of the raging COVID-19 pandemic.
As weeks turned into months, however, many citizens have grown increasingly frustrated with the ongoing regulations — and attendees at a planned protest in Florida are preparing to make their point in public.
“A celebration of freedom”
According to the Washington Examiner, the Fort Lauderdale demonstration will be marked by participants removing their masks and burning them.
Organizer Chris Nelson announced the upcoming event in a post on the website Free Florida. He dubbed the protest the “Million Maskless March and Mask Burning” and invited attendees to the location on April 10.
He said he chose that date because it marks “one year of mask tyranny in Broward County,” promising “a celebration of freedom” to commemorate the anniversary.
“It will feature recognition and prizes for those who have faithfully endured this last year, addresses from local leaders and activists and most importantly (and fun) a mask burning!” the announcement added.
According to Nelson, the planned events will be held in accordance with local laws and organizers have secured all necessary permits.
“We’re still in a war with this virus”
He went on to point out that water and snacks will be provided, though attendees are encouraged to show up with signs expressing criticism of mask mandates and vaccine passports.
“Broward County Government is pushing the experimental vaccine hard so signs against forced vaccinations are also encouraged,” Nelson wrote, encouraging like-minded Floridians to share news of the upcoming protest with as many individuals as possible.
For his part, President Joe Biden is a staunch proponent of mask mandates and recently made headlines by encouraging governors and local leaders who have rolled back such measures to reinstate them.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki echoed that position in a statement this week, asserting: “It is important for people to hear that we’re still in a war with this virus, and people still need to be vigilant in order to return to normal.”
Despite the recent pleas amid an uptick in infection rates, no Republican governor has yet relented on their decisions to repeal existing mask mandates or announced plans to do so. As for the upcoming Florida protest, it remains to be seen how big the turnout will be and how much attention it will receive from the mainstream media.