King Charlie's executive order commanding his subjects to cover their faces or be fined is a bunch of hooey, and here is why.

Governor Charlie Baker first declared a coronavirus state of emergency in Massachusetts on March 9, just about two months ago now, and yet only last Friday deemed it important enough to declare that all who walk his hallowed streets wear a face mask or some other form of face-covering to show obedience to his lordship. And even after the decree was announced from high on Mount Whoredom, King Charlie allowed five days to pass before the edict would take effect.

How is that for urgency?

Fox News recalls that on March 25, President Donald Trump said he saw a scenario where all Americans might be expected to wear masks in public "for a short period of time after we get back into gear." The network says the very next day U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams seemed to contradict Trump when he said “the data doesn't show” that wearing masks in public would keep people safe from the virus.

“What the World Health Organization and the CDC have reaffirmed in the last few days is that they do not recommend the general public wear masks,” Adams said.

In fact, Adams said wearing a mask could actually put people at greater risk of contracting COVID-19. Several friends of mine who are nurses agree.

Baker and other mandatory mask supporters such as New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell say if people don't have proper masks they can improvise by using a bandana or even an old t-shirt, neither of which does very much to prevent someone from contracting the virus. In other words, they are placebos or false hope against a virus for which there is no cure.

Mitchell has also said that the New Bedford Police Department would not "harass" people and that there will not be vigorous enforcement of the order in New Bedford. So what's the point?

Politicians have to feel as though they are doing and saying something at all times to show they are in command of the situation even if that something is as meaningless and dopey as Baker's order on masks.

Barry Richard is the host of The Barry Richard Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from noon to 3 p.m. Contact him at barry@wbsm.com and follow him on Twitter @BarryJRichard58. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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