By Jim Heffernan
Looking back, I wonder why my parents did not resort to murder as a solution to the problem of raising me. I was a classic “rebel without a cause”. I rejected them and their church, preferring the approval of my “hoodlum friends”.
Finally, at the age of 17 and after way too many “second chances”, my father let the cold hand of logic guide his course of action. He presented me with the choice of making my own way on the street or joining the military.
I wasn’t really crazy about either choice, but even my addled adolescent brain saw the military as a lesser of two bad alternatives. I was shrewd enough to realize the Air Force was the path that held the least chance of me getting shot or blown up.
The Air Force decided that they wanted me to become a radar repairman. The radars I worked on were rather complex and, for the radars to function properly, a hundred or so vacuum tubes, several mechanical systems, and thousands of smaller component had to function properly all at the same time. When any one failed, the radar was useless and the Air Force was not happy.
To equip me for this new role, the Air Force ran me through 33 weeks of 6 hour per day training sessions. Basic electricity, electronics, math, and practice repairs on the radar were included in the program.
Embedded in every week of training and most important of all, was the use of logic. Logic was what enabled us to repair a instructor-sabotaged radars within an allotted time of 10 minutes.
After my time in the service, I never touched a radar again. But the use of logic, mostly, has guided my life ever since. Sometimes, I have ignored logic, but ignoring logic always seemed to lead to problems.
The question of wearing masks, in this time of Covid-19, seems a question we should answer by applying the clear eye of logic, irrespective of our personal feelings.
Obviously, there are only two choices. Wear the mask or don’t.
The outcome of the choices has a wide range of outcomes, depending on how effective the mask is. Nobody is really sure how effective masks are, but doctors and nurses have been wearing them for decades and I suspect they are pretty effective.
The outcome of wearing the masks runs all the way from being inconvenient and looking silly if the mask is ineffective (big deal) to saving someone’s life (maybe your own) if the mask is effective at all. Saving someone’s life is a wonderful thing. If that’s not enough, I’ve been told that I’m better looking with a mask on my face.
The outcome of not wearing the masks runs all the way from the “glorious freedom” of not wearing a mask (big deal) to needlessly spreading Covid-19 and its sickness and death. Spreading Covid-19 needlessly is a very bad thing.
Logic tells me the question of masking really only has one good answer:
Wear the mask, maybe it’s not doing all the good we need, but it certainly is not causing us any harm. It shows you care about others …
When those of us who use logic see you unmasked in public, we know you’re missing something.