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Truthout - August 13, 2020

The director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has a dire warning for Americans still on the fence or actively opposed to wearing a mask or facial covering, or otherwise refusing to adhere to other social distancing rules: Your choices put the country in peril.

In an interview with WebMD published this week, CDC Director Robert Redfield invoked the well-known phrase from President John F. Kennedy’s inauguration speech: “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”

“Kind of try to paraphrase that,” Redfield said in the interview. “For your country right now and for the war that we’re in against COVID, I’m asking you to do four simple things: Wear a mask, social distance, wash your hands and be smart about crowds.”

University of California, San Francisco reports:

How many people need to wear masks to reduce community transmission?

“What you want is 100 percent of people to wear masks, but you’ll settle for 80 percent,” said Rutherford. In one simulation, researchers predicted that 80 percent of the population wearing masks would do more to reduce COVID-19 spread than a strict lockdown.

The latest forecast from the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation suggests that 33,000 deaths could be avoided by October 1 if 95 percent of people wore masks in public.

Even if you live in a community where few people wear masks, you would still reduce your own chances of catching the virus by wearing one, said Chin-Hong and Rutherford."