The Anti-Mask League of 1919

timkmak: A thread about the Anti-Mask League of 1919. (Unrolled.)

Initial mask wearing was good -- around 80 percent. By November cases were down, and public health officials recommended re-opening the city. Residents rushed to entertainment venues after having been denied this communal joy for months. The Mayor himself was fined by his own police chief after going to a show without a mask.

But a second wave surged in Dec 1918, and SF's Health Officer again urged people to wear masks voluntarily. [...]

San Francisco residents were fed up. This was the second wave of the pandemic, and they had already spent months between Sept and Nov being hassled, fined and even arrested for not having a mask on. Challenges of constitutionality were heard.

Christian Scientists objected, arguing that it was "subversive of personal liberty and constitutional rights." Civil libertarians argued that if health officials could force them to wear masks, then it could force them to inoculate "or any experiment or indignity." [...]

Over 2,000 people attended an event formed by San Franciscans called themselves 'THE ANTI-MASK LEAGUE,' denouncing the mandatory masking ordinance. [...] Moderates in the Anti-Mask League wanted to circulate an anti-mask petition. Extremists wanted to initiate recall proceedings of SF's Public Health Officer. [...]

We learn through this episode that various groups of Americans have been pushing back against public health measures for more than a hundred years -- and for similar reasons!


As of 8pm tonight, wearing a mask in public places around other people who are also wearing masks is both forbidden and required by New York law. I'm sure the police will enforce these contradictory mandates in a completely rational & nondiscriminatory fashion. [...]

Although @mjs_DC is undoubtedly right that many anti-mask laws were passed to fight the KKK, New York's anti-mask law actually dates to 1845 when it was passed to suppress the "anti-rent movement" of upstate tenant farmers.

NY's anti-mask law has been used against radicals ever since. In 2004, a state appeals court upheld the convictions of 11 anarchists who "covered their faces with bandanas while shouting epithets and political slogans during a May Day demonstration in Union Square Park."

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Live from the Sanctum Sanctorum: Ten Hours

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Great news for Martha's Bruce Steakhouse, too, I'll bet.

Ruth's Chris Steak House Gets $20 Million From Coronavirus Aid Program:

Ruth's, a company with more than 5,000 workers, received $20 million in forgivable loans on April 7. That is four days after the Small Business Administration opened the application window on its $350 billion Payroll Protection Program. [...]

The loans were intended for businesses with fewer than 500 employees, but language in the $2 trillion stimulus bill allows restaurants and hotel chains to participate regardless of how many people they employ.

Hmmm, who do we know who owns a hotel chain?

The maximum PPP loan is $10 million. Ruth's said two of its subsidiaries each received $10 million SBA loans from JPMorgan Chase & Co. and would use the proceeds primarily for payroll costs. The company, which operates or franchises 159 restaurants, had a profit of $42 million on revenue of $468 million last year. [...]

As of April 10, the company had about $86.6 million of cash on hand.

Big Restaurant, Hotel Chains Won Exemption to Get Small Business Loans:

Shake Shack Inc. hardly seems like a small enterprise, with 7,600 employees, about $500 million in annual revenue and net income last year of $24 million. Even so, it plans to apply for a new government-guaranteed small-business loan. [...]

In addition to the exemption for hotel and restaurant chains, a second exemption was granted for franchise owners in any line of business who employ more than 500 people, as long as no single outlet employs that many.

And with that, The Klept has finished its payout of dividends to members:

The U.S. Small Business Administration said Thursday morning the Paycheck Protection Program wouldn't be accepting any more applications for the $349 billion program. The agency reported approving more than 1.6 million Paycheck Protection Program loan applications totaling more than $339 billion from over 4,900 lending institutions.

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AT&T uses machine learning to detect foul language in telephone calls.

Oh, sorry, I got that headline wrong:

"Zoom says it uses machine-learning to detect nudity as virtual sex parties spread."

Like many social platforms, Zoom doesn't exactly want to be publicly known as the platform people are using to watch others masturbate -- even if that is exactly what some people are using it for. "Zoom's user policies explicitly prohibit any obscene, indecent, illegal, or violent activity or content on the platform," a spokesperson for the platform said. "We encourage users to report suspected violations of our policies, and we use a mix of tools, including machine learning, to proactively identify accounts that may be in violation." Execs at the platform did not respond to follow-up questions about what, exactly, these machine-learning tools are, or how exactly they would know if people were using the platform to watch each other masturbate en masse.

The Zoom spokesperson did note, however, that it is intended as a business tool, and that it would take a "number of actions" against people found to use it for "any activity that is harmful, obscene, or indecent, particularly as would be understood in the context of business usage," including "displays of nudity, violence, pornography, [and] sexually explicit material."

Heh heh, "business tool".

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We Are Taking COVID-19 Seriously

chrissyteigen: "does anyone know if we will get through this together or not? or if these times are certain or uncertain? no one letting me know"

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