MSNBC's "Morning Joe" co-host Mika Brzezinski blasted Republicans and President Donald Trump on the topic of face masks, and became so enraged that she declared she is "done being polite." She blamed Trump and his administration for killing people by the tens of thousands. (The Blaze, Dec. 5, 2020)
So what is the research about masks and COVID safety?
Reiss and Bhakdi (2020) stated: "There is simply a lack of clear evidence that people who are not ill or who are not providing care to a patient should wear a mask to reduce influenza or COVID-19 transmission (130). We are not aware of any single scientifically sound and undisputed article that would contradict the following:
1) There is no scientific evidence that symptom-free people without cough or fever spread the disease.
2) Simple masks do not and cannot stop the virus.
3) Masks do not and cannot protect from infection.
4) Non-medical face masks have very low filter efficiency (131)
5) Cotton surgical masks can be associated with a higher risk of penetration of microorganisms (penetration 97%). Moisture retention, reuse of cloth masks and poor filtration may result in increased risk of infection (132).
Since the government enforced the use of masks, many elderly people believed that they were safe while wearing them. Nothing could be further from the truth. Wearing a mask can entail serious health hazards, especially for people with pulmonary disease and cardiac insufficiency, for patients with anxiety and panic disorders and of course for children. Even the WHO originally stated that general wearing of masks did not serve any purpose (133)."
Quoted from: Reiss, Karina; Bhakdi, Sucharit. (2020). Corona, False Alarm? (p. 55-56). Chelsea Green Publishing. Kindle Edition.
(130) Using Face Masks in the Community (Stockholm: European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, 2020), https://www.ecdc.europa.eu/sites/default/files/documents/COVID-19-use-face-masks-community.pdf.
(131) Samy Rengasamy, Benjamin Eimer, and Ronald E. Shaffer, “Simple Respiratory Protection—Evaluation of the Filtration Performance of Cloth Masks and Common Fabric Materials Against 20–1000 nm Size Particles,” Annals of Occupational Hygiene 54, no. 7 (October 2010): 789–98, https://doi.org/10.1093/annhyg/meq044.
(132) C. Raina MacIntyre et al., “A Cluster Randomised Trial of Cloth Masks Compared with Medical Masks in Healthcare Workers,” BMJ Open 5, no. 4 (2015): e006577, https://doi.org/10.1136/bmjopen-2014-006577.
(133) “Advice on the Use of Masks in the Context of COVID-19,” World Health Organization, June 5, 2020, https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/advice-on-the-use-of-masks-in-the-community-during-home-care-and-in-healthcare-settings-in-the-context-of-the-novel-coronavirus-(2019-ncov)-outbreak.