By TAYLOR BURTON and
After more than seven months of the pandemic, many people are experiencing COVID-19 fatigue. Some Amarillo College students are growing tired of wearing masks, staying six feet apart, not being able to travel and see family or even go on vacation, but most are doing their best to maintain safety protocols.
“I do believe that a lot of people are ready to get back what they deem as normal. On the other hand, some people are still very worried about COVID, so they are still going strong,” Beth Rodriquez, a psychology professor, said.
Students say that following COVID-19 guidelines is annoying, but essential. “Being a nursing student has really opened my eyes in the past two years about how many germs are really out there and how they spread very quickly. Ever since working in the hospital for clinicals, I wash my hands every chance I see a sink,” Hunter Finley, a nursing major, said.
AC Counseling Center Coordinator Amber White said students must follow the college’s COVID-19 guidelines. “Personally, it is slightly inconvenient to wear a mask; however, the risk of getting COVID or passing it on to someone I love far outweighs wearing a piece of cloth on my face. Also, this far into the pandemic, wearing a mask feels like second nature,” White said.
White added that the AC Counseling Center can help students who are having trouble dealing with the new COVID-19 policies and regulations.
“They can be reached 24/7 at 833-986-1919,” she said.
While most AC students are diligently donning their masks in public, several said they understand why some people are opposed to mask-wearing.
“Most people are tired of wearing the mask due to breaking out, the heat outside, the mask is uncomfortable, etc. The list goes on forever,” M’Kenna Styles, a nursing major, said. “Some might not be able to breathe, and I don’t blame them,” Madison McCown, a graphic design major, said.
Other students said they think some people view mask mandates as infringing on their rights and freedom.
“I think people don’t want to be told what to do. People are stubborn and want to do what they want,” Isaac Galan, a graphic design major, said.
Galan also offered a message for the anti-maskers. “We all have rights and do what we want and I won’t judge you. But I advise you to think of your family or people who can easily catch it,” he said.
Galan said he is careful to wear his mask and observe safety precautions. “I’m not opposed to wearing a mask at all. If it helps me a little to prevent COVID-19 I will do that. I don’t want to get it and possibly transfer it to any family or friends.”
Styles agreed, noting that wearing a mask shows consideration for other people. “When wearing a mask I feel like I am respecting everyone around me compared to the others who don’t wear one,” she said.
With the number of cases currently spiking across Texas, Galan said that if mask-wearing can end the COVID-19 crisis, it is worth the inconvenience.
“We need to kick this thing and get back to how things were,” he said.