The Libertarian Party of Palm Beach County (LP Palm Beach) is encouraging the Board of Palm Beach County Commissioners to end the county’s mandate on forcing residents and tourists to wear masks in public. The mandate was imposed last year in response to COVID-19 and has been continually renewed and ends on April 18, 2021. There is a growing number of states which do not have mask mandates which now stands at 18, including Florida. Even though Florida does not have a mask mandate, the Board of County Commissioners have taken it upon themselves to keep one in place for the past year.
We have vaccinated over 30 percent of Palm Beach County residents against the COVID-19 virus, which has been responsible for the deaths of .15 percent of the state’s population according to government numbers. The threat is further diluted, as the synthetic vaccination numbers do not include those who have natural immunity due to carrying the antibodies from a prior infection because of the virus. LP Palm Beach is urging county leaders to follow the science which can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, and here.
Chairperson of LP Palm Beach, Karl Dickey said, “COVID-19 is a serious virus which our nation has taken seriously and taken unprecedented measures to combat. While any death to Floridians or visitors to the state is tragic, it is time to end the mask mandate in our county and let our residents breathe. We ask the county elected officials to follow the science and lift the mask mandate. Last year the federal government told us repeatedly that if we comply with mask mandates and wash our hands, we could ‘flatten the curve’ in 15 days and get back to our normal lives. It is now over one year later, the curve was flattened, now give us our freedom back.”
After reviewing multiple studies on lockdowns and mask mandates, the science is clear that the county government’s force on county residents during COVID-19 has been wrong more than it has been right. We now have evidence the lockdowns have been mostly ineffective in stopping the spread of SARS-CoV-2 in the actual world when we compare states with continual lockdowns and states that do not.
Libertarians believe individuals own their bodies and have rights over them that other individuals, groups, and governments may not violate. Individuals have the freedom and responsibility to decide what they knowingly and voluntarily consume, and what risks they accept to their own health, finances, safety, or life.
Unintended consequences are par for the course with expanded government action. While we have continued to track the effects of COVID-19, what is harder to track is the effects of lockdowns for Americans. Recent studies have shown at least a 30% increase in depression and anxiety in adults, and over 1 of 2 young adults now show symptoms of anxiety or depressive disorder. We have found children who were under the strictest quarantines to be four times more likely to experience PTSD. Long after the vaccine has brought us much closer to herd immunity, we will still feel the devastating mental effects from mostly honest attempts to solve a problem that could never have been solved.
In a related matter, the national Libertarian Party resolved that the Party is against any future attempts to mandate vaccine passports.