Politicizing masks: Mobile City Council to decide on mandatory face coverings

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MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — Tomorrow, Mobile’s City Council could vote to require masks in public places. It’s an issue that communities across the country are tackling… and it’s become highly politicized.

“I think it’s super unfortunate that this has become a political statement to wear a mask,” Dan Lamanna of Mobile said.

It’s a topic that has been at the center of this pandemic since the beginning.

“It keeps me safe, it keeps the people around me safe. If we were all doing it, i think we would be in a lot better position right now,” Lamanna said.

A political question clouding judgement for many as more and more people are seen without a mask.

“I wear my face mask when I’m inside of these office buildings and when I’m shopping at home, but I don’t wear them outside,” Alabama Rep. Bradley Byrne said.

A recent poll suggests nearly 76 percent of Democratic leaders are more open to wear face masks versus nearly 53 percent of Republican leaders, according to Pew research.

“There’s a lot of us on the Republican side that are wearing our masks,” Byrne said.

“The U.S. is leading in cases and the fact that we haven’t implemented masks yet is crazy,” Lemanna said.

As cities all across the country look to make a decision on mandatory masks in the coming days, many may question why it took so long in the first place…

“Our number of hospitalization and deaths continued to go down week after week and we didn’t feel at the time as it was mandatory,” said Dr. Rendi Murphee with the Mobile County Health Department.

Mobile City Council is expected to vote on this ordinance tomorrow. Of course, News 5 will be at that meeting and will update you as soon as we learn more.

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