Gov. Abbott Slaps Down Local Government's Ability to Enforce Mask Mandates In Texas

(Nick Wagner/Austin American-Statesman via AP, Pool)

If local governments in Texas were hoping they’d be able to enforce mask mandates within their borders (looking at you Dallas county) they were horribly mistaken and Texas Governor Greg Abbott would like to dispel the illusion that this was going to continue.

Tuesday afternoon, Abbott released a tweet displaying his new order that no Texas government entity can impose mask mandates on the people.

“TX is prohibiting mask mandates by gov’t entities,” tweeted Abbott. “Starting May 21, local govts attempting to impose mask mandates can be fined up to $1K. We’re also prohibiting public schools from mandating masks after June 4. Texans, not gov’t, should decide their best health practices.”

This means any state government entity, including schools and state-supported living centers according to the executive order.

To be clear, this still allows for private businesses to require masks if they so choose, and to be sure, this is a good thing, however, some local governments may continue to enforce unnecessary restrictions on the people. This stops them from being able to do this cold.

Texas has seen a massive decline in COVID-19 cases both thanks to post-infection immunity and vaccinations. Abbott spiked this football yesterday, trumpeting the fact that Texas is seeing its lowest numbers including no COVID-related deaths since March 2020.

Out of 30 million Texans, around 8 million are fully vaccinated. While some may consider these numbers too few, the fact that cases continue to fall with no deaths only shows that lifting mandates and restrictions is the right move.

The virus clearly isn’t held back social distancing and mask-wearing. Oddly enough, it seems to decrease the most when citizens are out in the open and living their lives like normal.

Luckily, Texas has a governor that follows the science and knows that mandates aren’t just useless, they’re damaging to the lives of Texans.