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Chicago Announces It is Lifting Mask and Vaccine Mandates — But There is an Infuriating Catch

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot made an important announcement on Tuesday: The Windy City won’t be imposing mask and vaccine mandates after February 28. Unfortunately, the lifting of mask mandates won’t include those least susceptible to Covid and most emotionally vulnerable: Schoolchildren.

“Chicago will lift its mask and proof-of-vaccine mandates next week, but Chicago Public School students, teachers and employees must keep their masks on — at least for the time being,’ the Sun-Times reported.

“Starting this coming Monday, patrons of restaurants, bars and gyms will be free to take their masks off and keep their vaccine cards in their wallets, Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Chicago Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady announced at a City Hall news conference Tuesday,” the report noted.

“It’s important for us to recognize this moment for what it is: a huge step forward in our effort to overcome COVID-19,” Lightfoot said. “We would not have been in a position — even a few weeks ago — to be making this kind of announcement today.”

Mayor Lightfoot, who has a history of flaunting her own mask rules, is thus following in the unscientific footsteps of New York Governor Kathy Hochul, who recently dropped indoor mask mandates, but kept them for schools.

What do New York and Chicago have in common? Teacher’s unions.

The teacher’s unions have been beyond some of the most unscientific and damaging Covid policies for children’s health. There are absolutely no positive results to report for the backwards and unnatural policy of child-masking.

Below are the mask optional states versus the mask mandate states.

Source: @ianmsc/Twitter

The critical thing to note here (and the huge ‘I told you so’ for those paying attention) is that these data curves aren’t anomalies. They are not due to seasonal or regional factors.

That is because children have participated in studies, and as reported here in mid-January: Maskless kids are less likely to test positive for Covid.

Source: Office for National Statistics (U.K.)

Whether it is because kids play with their masks or don’t wear them properly or whatever excuses people want to make, the masks actually correlate with higher case rates among children. That’s according to the Office for National Statistics (U.K.).

There is data independent of the Office for National Statistics that echoes these findings. The Substack researcher el gato malo cited Emily Oster data on school masking. These were the conclusions:

  • students in masked schools had a 21% higher case rate than students in schools with no masks. masks do not look to protect your kids.
  • staff case rate was 23% higher in masked schools.
  • areas imposing masks had a 19% higher overall community case rate.

It gets worse. Here are the charts of no mask and mask mandate schools.

Mask mandates aren’t just statistically useless, they do a tremendous amount of harm to children’s wellbeing.

A Surgeon General’s report warned that Covid policies are exacerbating the childhood mental health crisis. Depression is up. Anxiety is up. Drug use is up. Child suicide attempts are way up.

Covid is no longer a national crisis. Cruel, unscientific and useless Covid policies like school masking — that is the crisis.


The Mainstream Media Finally Admit: Mask Mandates Don’t Really Do Anything Against Covid

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OPINION: This article contains commentary which reflects the author's opinion.