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    County Mask Mandate Extended Begs The Question – Why?

    By Jennifer Amodei and Debra Tash

    On October 18th 2021, the County of Ventura issued a press release extending its mask mandate.  It moved the goalposts for removing the mandate, which on its face, excuse the pun, set up seemingly arbitrary benchmarks to remove the order.

    From the release:
    The order will continue to be in effect until:
    (1) Ventura County reaches the moderate (yellow) COVID-19 transmission tier, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (a daily case rate of 7 per 100,000), and remains there for at least three weeks; and
    (2) COVID-19 hospitalizations in the County are low and stable, in the judgment of the Health Officer; and
    (3) eight weeks have passed since a COVID-19 vaccine has been authorized for emergency use by federal and state authorities for 5 to 11-year-olds or 80% of the County’s eligible population is fully vaccinated with two doses of Pfizer or Moderna or one dose of Johnson & Johnson (booster doses not considered); Or
    until the Order is extended, rescinded, superseded or amended in writing by the Health Officer.

    Number 1: is asking compliance to what seems the old state color tiered system that was retired on June 2021. The CDC maintains tiers for travel but nothing that we could find pertaining current conditions within US counties,  COVID Travel Tiers.

    Number 2: refers to hospitalizations being determined to be low and stable, a benchmark left to the sole discretion of Dr. Levin, who is a pediatrician.  

    Number 3: which is poorly worded, states; that eight weeks must pass from when the FDA authorizes Covid 19 vaccines for the 5 to 11 year old cohort or 80% of the eligible population has been vaccinated.  First, why would anyone consider vaccination necessary for an age group that statistically is unaffected by the disease?  Only 400 have died worldwide and most with serious comorbidities. Further by including the younger age group the county has increased the eligible population, and this without considering natural immunity for those who have already gotten Covid 19 and have recovered.  Further from the National Institute of Health’s own study these vaccines are unrelated, in other words are apparently not a factor, in case rate numbers: Increases in COVID-19 are unrelated to levels of vaccination across 68 countries and 2947 counties in the United States

    According to an internal study done by Ventura County’s Heath director Dr. Levin dated April 27th, 2020, Levin0-Anti-mask-study, questions were raised on the efficiency of the masks in various settings and goes into detail whether they reduce the spread of the Covid 19 virus. It concludes that the general type of cloth masks used the time, and still used, do not afford significant protection against the virus.

    In an email dated October 19th 2021 to Citizens Journal from the County’s Public Information officer, Ashley Bautista, defended the study’s conclusions.  They were based on what was available at the time since N95 masks were in short supply and were being kept for health workers. Levin maintained that cloth masks, if used, had to be tripled layered, washed frequently and thrown away after a few times.  As to the present use, Ms. Bautista writes, “Even then, they were not as good as procedure masks. Dr. Levin did not recommend masks at that time because of those reasons he instead advocated for social distancing, washing hands frequently and staying away from gatherings. Ever since procedure masks became available he has been a supporter.”

    When the study was conducted in April of 2020 the efficacy of the masks was honestly questioned. Countless studies have been conducted since and confirm that the virus is microscopic and no mask could stop the spread. Yet here we find the goalpost moved again; a carrot almost always is out of reach.

    We have an amble supply of procedural masks now.  Yet are they really effective barriers to keeping us “safe” from anything?  Have you read the advisement on the box?


    This health directive comes the day after a school walkout of parents across California who absolutely do not want their children to participate in these trials for the experimental MRNA vaccines nor have them injected with a harmful spike protein.  The timing of extending the mandate, the fact masks are not effective and Dr. Levin knows it, leads to an unsettling conclusion, what seems to be happening is a drive to vaccinate everyone.  We can only ask the obvious – WHY? 

    Ms. Amodei is a local activist

    Debra Tash is former Editor-in-Chief of, past president for Citizens Alliance for Property Rights, business executive and award-winning author, residing in Somis.

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