A look at mindsets toward masks after CDC guidelines change

Reporter: Nicole Gabe Writer: Jack Lowenstein
Madeline Raskay, right, and Aldany Diaz, third from left, wear face masks while walking along the Atlanta BeltLine in Atlanta’s Old Fourth Ward community, Friday, May 14, 2021. Both of them say they are fully vaccinated but still prefer to wear face masks in while out in public. (Alyssa Pointer/Atlanta Journal-Constitution via AP)

The fully vaccinated are ready to enjoy the first week out and about with no mask requirement, but one look outside shows not everyone is ready to ditch them yet.

We spoke to people about the psychology behind keeping masks and why some people say they’re still wearing them.

“If you’re not wearing a mask, people give you a funny look? Kevin Fainguersch said. “Yeah, I see that.”

Publix, Target and Trader Joe’s are among major stores that are little-by-little ditching their mask requirements.

“The mask does give us a feeling of safety,” said Alice Bartley, with FGCU’s Community Counseling Center.

Bartley says, for some, it’s a sense of security, but to others, the mask represents something else.

“But it also gives us a feeling of being intruded upon,” Bartley said. “Someone else is making a decision on how we want to live our lives.”

Austin Minor is not vaccinated, and he’s not a fan of the masks, but he’ll still wear them.

“I do usually whenever I go into bigger stores, but whenever I’m out in public, I definitely don’t,” Minor said.

Barbra and Bob Leger are both vaccinated and prefer to mask up.

“Just for super, super safety,” Barbra said. “We’re still ‘Purell-ing” all the time.”

Minor told us he’s felt the pressure before, but that’s not the case for the leger’s

“In Florida, it definitely happens,” Minor said. “And if I’m in a place where no one is wearing a mask, sometimes I don’t wear it.”

“We haven’t felt it, so again, freedom of choice,” Barbra said. “Everybody is letting people be.”

Bartley says whatever you decide, don’t judge others for their decision on whether to make up or not.

Last week, the CDC announced fully-vaccinated Americans can resume activities without wearing a mask or physically distancing. Except where required by federal, state, local rules and regulations. That includes local businesses and workplaces.

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