The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Community divided by mandates

Photos by Ian McIntoshThe Collegian

Greg Abbott’s orders questioned by students, faculty

Jose Romero

Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order May 18 prohibiting Texas government entities from mandating masks, and that has created a mixed reaction among students and faculty.
Connect Campus student Dan Beavers agrees with Abbott’s decision and said it should be up to an individual to decide whether or not they want to wear a mask.

“The government should not be able to mandate masks,” he said. “We live in America after all. If people want to wear masks, let them but don’t require them.”

South student David Salumu said he’s indecisive about whether or not masks should be mandated. He said he’s vaccinated, but with the Delta variant still out there, it doesn’t feel safe to him yet.

“I disagree and agree at the same time about mask mandates,” he said. “Sometimes it needs to be mandated, but at the end of the day, it’s your own responsibility.”

Salumu’s stance is similar to what Abbott wrote on Twitter.

“The path forward relies on personal responsibility — not government mandates,” Abbott wrote.

In response to Abbott’s tweet, NE music professor Hsinyi Wang said banning mask mandates is a government mandate in itself, pointing out the irony in his statement.

“Decisions regarding public health shall be decided and announced by public health experts and those experts only,” she said. “Same reason as I, a trained musician, shall not supervise my neighbor’s plumbing repair.”

Unlike Wang, NW student Shyanna Wymer doesn’t agree with any kind of mandate. Wymer said society is using the pandemic as an excuse for its craziness, which shifts the focus off of other issues like unemployment and people being unable to pay their rent.

“I think that having to wear a mask is a bit ridiculous,” she said. “If COVID is going to kill someone, well, then that is what will be. I am not meaning to sound cold-hearted, but at this point, I am tired of hearing that word, ‘COVID.’”

Abbott tested positive for COVID-19 Aug.17, reactions to his case were also mixed.
Salumu chuckled then said he was speechless when he heard about Abbott’s positive test. Beavers and Wang don’t think Abbott getting COVID will change people’s minds on mandates for masks or vaccinations.

“Abbott’s own COVID positive didn’t even sway his own mind as he put out another executive order banning vaccine mandating,” Wang said.

Wymer said her opinion on the vaccine is that it shouldn’t be mandatory.

“I have not received it and do not plan to,” she said. “If I end up with COVID, well, then that is my life story. I will either survive or I will die. Just like every other person on this planet is someday going to do.”

Wang said the COVID vaccination should be treated the same as the meningitis shot, which is mandatory for enrollment, according to state law.

Salumu said nobody is supposed to tell people what to do with their bodies, so he disagrees with mandatory COVID vaccinations.

“If you feel like it’s safe for you, take it,” he said. “If you don’t feel like it’s safe for you, don’t take it. Me? I took it because I feel like it’s safe, but I’m not going to make it mandatory for somebody to take the COVID vaccine.”

Salumu said he likes being back on campus. He laughed then said he wasn’t fully understanding things online.

“We’re going to reach a point where life has to go on,” he said. “It’s been like two years, so we reach a point where we’re like, OK, we have to cope with this situation then move on from it. We don’t have to live like a prisoner.”

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