Masks Banned on Philadelphia Public Transportation System to Fight Gun Violence

A commuter boards a SEPTA bus in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S., on Friday, July 30, 2021. SEPTA's ridership remains significantly lower than its pre-pandemic traffic, despite Philadelphia lifting its pandemic restrictions and vaccinating more than 70% of the adult population, reports the PhillyVoice. Photographer: Hannah Beier/Bloomberg
Hannah Beier/Bloomberg via Getty

Philadelphia has banned masks on its Center City SEPTA public transportation system in the hope of curtailing gun violence incidents.

CBS News reported an individual in a mask shot and killed a high school student on a SEPTA bus last week and on Memorial Day, another gunman in a mask shot a 19-year-old on a bus.

The 19-year-old survived his injuries.

SEPTA police chief Charles Lawson announced masks will no longer be allowed, saying, “Those face masks are prohibited on SEPTA property. You come on SEPTA property wearing your shiesty, you will be engaged by police. … You got two choices, remove it, or we escort you off the property.”

Philadelphia Magazine responded to the ban by claiming it will not reduce crime. Moreover, the magazine claimed the ban “isn’t just a reactive attempt to confront crime; it’s a dated, anti-Black stunt that scapegoats hip-hop culture.”

But the Philadelphia Tribune quoted chief Lawson saying, ““These full head coverings are a major issue because we’re seeing it routinely being worn in 80-degree weather or above, and there is no legitimate reason, pandemic withstanding, no legitimate reason to wear a full head covering in public.”

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio and a Turning Point USA Ambassador. He was a Visiting Fellow at the Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal in 2010. and he holds a Ph.D. in Military History, with a focus on the Vietnam War (brown water navy), U.S. Navy since Inception, the Civil War, and Early Modern Europe. Follow him on Instagram: @awr_hawkins. You can sign up to get Down Range at Reach him directly at



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