Anti-masker’s harassment spectacularly backfires in viral video

‘Scared of Covid?’

Abe Asher
Wednesday 19 April 2023 03:13 BST
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An anti-masker’s attempted humilitation of a park ranger wearing a facemask went awry after he learned the ranger was not wearing the mask as a Covid-19 precaution.

In a video that quickly went viral on social media, an anti-masker approached a park ranger working on a path and began aggressively asking him why he was wearing a “chin diaper” on a “beautiful day.”

“Scared of Covid?” the anti-masker asked the ranger.

The ranger told the anti-masker that he was not scared of Covid, and that he had the mask on for an entirely different purpose: to avoid breathing metal debris during the course of his work.

“I’m grinding the metal,” the ranger replied. “Keeping it out of my face.”

“Oh, okay,” the anti-masker replied. “Alright.”

It is not entirely clear who the people are in the video or where the interaction was filmed. The video went viral after it was tweeted by the account Patriot Takes, which is devoted to highlighting right-wing extremism and threats to American democracy.

The video has been viewed nearly 1.8m times on Twitter, emblematic of a cultural battle that still animates members of the right and left over Covid precautions and how they intersect with norms of community care, individualism, masculinity, and science.

The US ended its Covid national emergency last week, though the virus continues to infect thousands of people in the country each week and has killed more than one million Americans. Wearing a mask in crowded spaces remains a doctor-recommended measure people can take to avoid illness if they so choose. As the anti-masker who recorded the video found out, masks have myriad other protective purposes as well.

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