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Wednesday, November 30, 2022
Editor’s NotebookEditor’s Notebook: You can’t mask the ridicule

Editor’s Notebook: You can’t mask the ridicule

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Based on feedback we’ve been getting from our sources in the high-school-sports world, Arlington Public Schools has become something of a punching-bag of ridicule for its ongoing policy of requiring student-athletes to wear masks even in situations where it not only serves no good, but well could prove to be counterproductive from a health standpoint.

The most heaping helping of abuse being directed at Arlington comes from the region’s big brother, Fairfax County, which has, shall we say, more common-sense approach to mask-wearing among athletes. Lordy, when even Fairfax County looks sane by comparison, you know how bad it’s gotten.

(What perhaps most irks Fairfax is that, in order to play Arlington teams in Arlington, Fairfax players wear masks – apparently out of courtesy to their hosts rather than some hard-and-fast requirement imposed by A-town. But when Arlington teams go to Fairfax venues, Fairfax players are generally mask-less while Arlington students are required by their own administrators to mask up. Does that make any sense to you?)

Obviously, Arlington’s policy is a joke. It doesn’t “follow the science” – it’s just another example of Arlington Public Schools’ skittishness and virtue-signaling when it comes to just about everything, including school athletics. It is like we have entered a parallel universe and cannot get back home to Reality-ville.


Most Arlington coaches not only have heard the ridicule, they agree it’s warranted. Not they they’d speak up in public, however; they live in terror of pissing off the higher-ups, as public schools are top-down autocracies where any form of dissent is rooted out mercilessly. But behind the scenes, they regale us with how stupid it all is.

SPEAKING OF MASKS: Anyone know why our president is wearing masks outside, when his own administration’s guidance is they are not needed?

Two possibilities:

  • The guy is terrified of catching the Wuhan sniffles of death. Seems reasonable; that’s one reason (not the only one, though) he hid in the basement in Delaware for much of the campaign. And he does not look like he’d be able to hold up against a really bad case of the COVID.
  • He’s sending dog whistles to his supporters to stay masked up, trying to paint those who don’t do so as less socially virtuous. And indeed, there are those out there wandering around, fully vaccinated, who remain all masked up. At best it’s silly virtue-signaling; at worst it’s people sending the wrong message to others about, as the saying goes, “following the science.”

Would be nice to see President Biden drop the mask when outdoors. Not just for us, but for him, too, because he’s not going to be able to continue skirting questions from the media about it. Even the docile, neutered White House press corps[e] eventually is going to have to start asking.

THIS HAS ME WRITTEN ALL OVER IT! From our weekly crossword, 60 Down: “Self-described as lovable, cute and furry.”

If the answer is a five-letter answer that starts with an “S”, it’s me!

  • Scott McCaffrey

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