A Florida restaurant is facing serious backlash after posting a sign in the window voicing anti-masking viewpoints. Beckyjack’s Food Shack in Spring Hill, Hernando County shared a photo of the sign on their Facebook page on Sunday, February 11 which read: “Face diapers not required. Everyone welcome.” Needless to say, the response they’ve received has been pretty intense.
- Why would you encourage people to spread COVID-19? While the state of Florida doesn’t have a mask mandate (massive mistake), it does recommend that members of the public wear masks when leaving the house, especially when going places that are busy/overcrowded. By the restaurant actively encouraging people not to wear masks, they’re basically encouraging the spread of this illness. “Howdy Folks! Happy Valentine’s Day,” read the caption on the post. “A friendly reminder that we DO NOT require Face Masks.”
- Apparently, this wasn’t about pushing an agenda. Talking to local news affiliate WFLA, the restaurant’s owner Jesse Fox claimed the sign wasn’t telling people not to wear masks, it was simply about “informing” customers that if they did want to come in, they didn’t have to wear a mask if they didn’t want to. Why did that require an announcement? Anti-maskers tend to do this naturally – they certainly don’t need a snarky window sign for it.
- The owners don’t wear masks either, by the way. Another motivation behind the sign? The shock on many customer’s faces when visiting Beckyjack’s and seeing the owners themselves without face masks. Sounds super safe in an establishment serving food! “We did a post just trying to be proactive letting everybody know what the mask requirement is or isn’t at Beckyjack’s because some people were coming in … surprised that we weren’t wearing masks,” Fox explained. “We’re getting a ton of feedback both positive and negative.”
- Fox doesn’t think he’s doing anything wrong. In fact, he just says he’s following the rules. Since there’s no law requiring him to wear a mask, that must mean it’s safe not to do so, right? “I don’t feel like I am going against the grain. I feel like I’m using common sense,” he said.
- The response has definitely been mixed. While many people have rightfully branded the sign and Fox’s behavior as irresponsible and “disgusting,” the anti-masking contingent in the area are full of praise for Beckyjack’s and their embracing of the concept of “freedom.” One person wrote: “Yes!! Love BeckyJack’s Food Shack! Only in America 2021 is being welcoming of EVERYONE cause for such angst! FYI, this is how IT SHOULD BE. If you want to wear a mask wear a mask, if you don’t then don’t. Pretty simple concept, it used to be referred to as Freedom!” I guess if you want to end up on a ventilator, that’s your choice too. Long live freedom?