President Joe Biden urged Americans Monday not to judge those who still want to wear a mask during the coronavirus pandemic even after their full vaccination.
“Let’s all be kind and respectful for one another as we come out of this pandemic and respect those who want to continue to wear a mask even if they’ve been vaccinated,” Biden said.
Biden urged people to have patience for those who felt the need to keep wearing masks and also for businesses that still wanted to maintain mask mandates.
“That’s a decision they can make,” he said.
Biden’s tone toward people who still want to wear masks despite the scientific data appeared much different than the way he approached people who opposed to wearing masks.
“You know, some may say, ‘I just feel more comfortable continuing to wear a mask,'” Biden acknowledged last week after the CDC announced it was safe for vaccinated Americans to remove their masks. “They may feel that way. So, if you’re someone with a mask, please treat them with kindness and respect.”
But for vaccinated people still wearing their masks, Biden again urged patience.
“We’ve had too much conflict, too much bitterness, too much anger, too much polarization of this issue about wearing masks,” he said last week. “Let’s put it to rest.”
The president cited scientific data showing the coronavirus vaccines protected people from coronavirus “as well” or “better” than wearing a mask.
But he urged Americans who have not received the vaccine to keep wearing their masks until they did so.
“You can protect yourself from serious illness from COVID [coronavirus] by getting vaccinated,” he said. “Or wearing a mask until you’re fully vaccinated. Either way, you’re protected.”