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Letters to the Editor: Mask mandates are useless without fines. L.A. should act

Masks for sale
A retailer in downtown Los Angeles’ garment district displays protective masks for sale April 29.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: It is high time that somebody in Los Angeles called for putting some teeth in the form of enforcement into the city’s mask mandate. (“Missing a mask? One L.A. politician is ready to fine you $100,” July 29)

Thus far countries in which there is widespread mask wearing — including those that impose fines for noncompliance — have had far lower mortality rates and faster economic recoveries than the U.S. Unfortunately, effective leadership is mostly absent in both the national and state arenas.

Yes, Gov. Gavin Newsom has issued executive orders, but they have mostly been ineffective in the absence of any enforcement attempt.

John T. Chiu, Newport Beach

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To the editor: Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti is again showing his unwillingness to take any action, however necessary, to get this pandemic under control if it will in any way adversely affect his political future.

Preferring “education” to fines is simply a way to avoid taking what would probably be an unpopular action in some quarters. It is obvious, however, that education is not working.

At this point those who don’t know that wearing masks protects both the wearer and those around them are simply ineducable.

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Gordon J. Louttit, Manhattan Beach

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To the editor: Los Angeles is considering fining people who are not wearing masks.

Instead of a fine, I’m wondering if maybe those scofflaws might learn the necessity of a mask if they were required to visit a hospital intensive care unit or watch a video of COVID-19 patients who are intubated and suffering from this horrible virus.

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Maybe that would get their attention. Wear a mask!

Susan Gregory, Claremont

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To the editor: To those who refuse to wear a mask because it represents the government taking away your freedom, I wonder, do you also refuse to stop at traffic lights and believe it’s your right to drink and drive?

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Do you want to live in a lawless world where nothing is done to keep people alive and well?

Barbara Vogel, Van Nuys


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