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Thank you for your editorial on Nov. 13 regarding COVID-19. While I will never understand why so many people in the community feel their rights are infringed upon if masks are mandated, I agree that businesses could and should absolutely require this.

When I am in a store, I don't allow people without a mask to come close to me. I hold my hand up and tell them to stay away since they are not masked. I encourage everyone to do this for their own protection. I read the numbers published every day in the Times News, and they terrify me. Our number of cases and deaths from COVID are skyrocketing just as the epidemiologists predicted.

But publishing the numbers isn't enough. It begs the question: Now that we know this, what do we do? Our governor has turned this over to local government, thus effectively, much like Pilate, washing his hands of the matter. We are in desperate need of leadership. If no one else will step up to the plate, you're right in suggesting local businesses pick up the slack.

Penny Romeo

Kingsport