I feel sorry for those currently in college.
For droves of 2020 freshmen, what should’ve been the most exciting time of their lives turned out to be a depressing, disconnected dud, courtesy of culture shock via no in-person classes and no extracurriculars.
And even now — over a year past the start of our planetary pandemic — in many cases, a casual walk across the quad can’t check the most basic box of satisfactorily seeing one’s peers.
For what may feel like a lifetime, Americans out and about have grown accustomed to everyone hiding in plain sight.
Visually, there’s a moratorium on mouths.
And in stores, in theaters — even outdoors — noses have become the new nipples: No shirt, no service.
So go coverings on campus, as well.
And when and where is a face more important than at an adolescent’s social peak?
After all, that’s how Facebook began — Mark Zuckerberg had reached the perfect age to want to rate people’s faces.
Hence, perhaps, not every college student has masks in mind.
And one secondary school in Standish, Maine is making them pay for their preference.
The institution, in fact, has decided to fine those who break the rules.
Over just the past couple weeks, 21 citations have been handed out.
Student Patrick Meyers described a Sunday afternoon incident that left him ticketed:
“[A campus police officer] kind of just saw me slipping without a mask on. I had it below my nose and rolled right around to me said, ‘Hate to do this to you, but I got to give you a $50 fine.’”
Patrick must’ve hated it, too — he told WBZ the weather that day was terrific.
Of course, Saint Joseph’s is far from alone where covering one’s countenance is concerned.
Many cities still have mandates, and Texas’s Odessa College, for example, is continuing the requirement even though Gov. Greg Abbott ended his order March 10th.
On March 2nd, Odessa’s website announced accordingly:
[W]e will continue to follow the CDC guidelines to mitigate the spread and unpredictability of the COVID-19 virus. The college’s screening and sanitization protocols significantly reduce exposure to the virus in learning and student support spaces. As such, the college will maintain the current pandemic protocol until further notice:
- Daily health screenings
- Mandatory face coverings
- Social distancing practices
- Sanitization of work, learning and student support spaces.
Back to Maine, Saint Joseph’s Spokesman Oliver Griswold hailed a main mission:
“We are using all of the tools at our disposal to try to keep COVID off campus.”
Clearly, they are — to the tune of fifty bucks a pop.
From Channel 4:
The college is defending the fines saying students were given plenty of advance notice about the fines.
If only we’d all have been given advance notice about 2020.
Perhaps the faithful would’ve prayed to St. Joseph for something different.
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