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Protest safely — pandemic has not gone away

Following the May 25 killing of George Floyd, a black man who died after a white Minneapolis officer pressed a knee into his neck, protests began to take center stage across the country — including here in Marquette.

People are outraged, and rightfully so; but, an Associated Press article released this week reminds protesters that precautions must still be taken to guard against the spread of COVID-19.

“Whether they’re fired up or not that doesn’t prevent them from getting the virus,” said Bradley Pollock, chairman of the Department of Public Health Sciences at the University of California, Davis.

The article states that even for the many protesters who have been wearing masks, those don’t guarantee protection from the coronavirus. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends cloth masks because they can make it more difficult for infected people to spread the virus — but they are not designed to protect the person wearing the mask from getting it.

“I will continue to stress, because it seems like a lifetime ago: We are still in the middle of a pandemic,” said Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz.

While we at The Mining Journal are all for the people gathering together to speak their minds, the last thing we want to see is a rise in COVID-19 numbers as a result. By all means, use your rights to peacefully protest, but do so with the safety of yourself and your neighbors in mind. Remember to practice social distancing, wear a mask, and keep your hands away from your face.

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