Americans need to join the rest of the world and wear a mask


Emilio Morenatti / AP

Tourists wearing face masks wait to cross a road in downtown Barcelona, Spain, Thursday, July 16, 2020.

The United States just celebrated its 244th birthday, which is like being a 24-year-old compared to the United Kingdom, a 15-year-old compared to France and just 8 months old when compared to China.

We are a young nation, and sometimes we can’t help acting that way.

However, America was not just born into modern times; we made times modern with our revolutionary philosophies around freedom, independence and democracy. What the rest of the world thought were overly ambitious ideas from a naive group of farmers turned into a catalyst for great change around the world.

At that time, being rebellious not only was what was best for America but had a dramatically positive impact on the world. We are a complicated nation, of course, with great contradictions from the start: Thomas Jefferson wrote the famous words “all men are created equal,” yet owned slaves. Our past is blemished for sure and there is plenty to be ashamed of, but there is so much to be proud of as well.

More innovation has come out of America in a short time than any country in the world. Americans literally illuminated the world by discovering electricity and inventing the light bulb. We connected the world with the telephone, the internet, personal computers, the mobile phone and today’s technology that elegantly combines all of this tech into singular devices. We are such a unique and amazing country it makes me want to scream with excitement and gratitude that I was fortunate enough to be born in the United States.

But great pride can easily turn into arrogance. Independence can transition into selfishness.

When it comes to wearing a mask, let’s not be so American. Today, let’s borrow a little humility from our friends in Asia who have mostly seen great results.

Being a little concerned for the collective won’t make us communists. Throwing on a mask won’t make us look weak or lead to losing our right to bear arms. Wearing a mask won’t silence us or take away our freedom of speech or right to protest — I’m pretty sure that was just proven definitively.

Americans don’t always have to be the cool kid at the party who refuses to dance. Let’s join the rest of the world and wear a mask like no one is watching.

And if this oversimplified history lesson and self-righteous plea to wear masks isn’t resonating with you and you are a Nevada resident, then please do it for one simple reason: If you don’t wear a mask you are giving our government justification to shut down our businesses and you or someone you know will lose their job. Life will get even harder for many.

Are we so insecure that we will lose our American culture, freedom and spirit that we won’t put on a mask? I assure you the American spirit is too strong. We will always be the rebellious world leader with innovative ideas and strong beliefs. The fabric of our country is far stronger than the fabric of a mask.

Seth Schorr is CEO of Fifth Street Gaming.