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Letters to the Editor: Mask up, even when no one’s around? L.A.'s new rule is too broad

Face mask
A runner wears a bandanna on his face in Canoga Park on May 14.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: It would appear that L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti, by requiring masks to be worn by anyone venturing outdoors, does not believe we can exercise any judgment at all.

Making the decision not to wear a face mask during strenuous exercise — such as cycling, running, hiking or even just walking — in areas where no one is even remotely close presents no risk of exposing someone else to the virus. In fact, the city’s new strict mask mandate could have negative consequences by discouraging physical activity, something that promotes good health.

I fully support requiring people to wear face coverings when they are likely to encounter others within a specified distance, but surely some judgment can be exercised. These blanket decrees just fuel mistrust in government.

Mike Rath, Winnetka

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To the editor: Our country is beset by a virus that can inflict great suffering and even death. I do not want to get it. I do not want my family (including a physician daughter who has treated COVID-19 patients) to get it.

One way to reduce the spread is an act of simple courtesy: Wear a mask when you are around others, especially inside buildings.

Because the virus can be transmitted by asymptomatic people, we cannot be certain we are not carriers. Masks reduce the amount and range of the droplets and aerosolized particles we disperse.

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So please, wear a mask and do your part to reduce transmission. Surely such a minor, occasional imposition on your “freedom” is worthwhile.

James Percival, Newport Beach

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To the editor: I don’t recall having voted for Los Angeles County Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer, yet she seems to have absolute power.

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There appears to be no finish line; it keeps getting moved down the road. The rules get changed frequently, and I fear that there will not be an equitable end to this until at least the middle of next year.

Glenn Zweifel, Mar Vista


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