Tired of the coronavirus pandemic and its associated lifestyle restrictions, some businessmen and church leaders across the Inner Empire say they are not ready to go into effect on Wednesday, December 15, a statewide ban on home masks.
Some say they will obey anyway. Others won’t.
Some say they are outraged.
Pastor Tim Thompson of 412 Church Murrieta called the latest government order “ludicrous.”
“This is yet another coup by our government,” Thompson said. “I think they have no right to do what they do.”
And Thompson will not ask his flock to obey.
“It will not affect what I do in any way,” he said. “I’m going to ignore him (Governor Gavin Newsom).”
The Newsom administration announced that the new mandate will begin Wednesday and run until January 15th. California’s new coronavirus cases have jumped 47% in the past two weeks, according to the Associated Press.
Patrick Scales, pastor of the Shield of Faith family church in Fontana, said he would recommend that parishioners wear masks and cover their faces if they do not have masks.
“We are still checking the temperature at the door,” he said.
“In church, I have no problem keeping the law,” Skales said. “I’m not looking for an excuse to break the law or be above the law. I don’t mind obeying for a month. “
But Skales said he believed people were tired of restrictions and tired of constant prescriptions.
“I just think it’s getting out of hand now,” he said. “What will happen with the next mutation? Where will it end? “
Bill Wilson, whose family owns the sprawling Wilson Creek winery in the hills east of Temecula, said he expects a lot of backlash.
“When they shut us down at this time last year, there was a different mindset among the people,” he said.
After several waves of restrictions and easing in the Inner Region in recent months, Wilson said many will not want to wear the mask again.
“I think people are not going to accept this sitting down like last year,” he said.
Wilson said he would comply.
“We’ll probably get our employees to disguise,” he said, and will encourage clients to wear face masks when they enter the house.
“But we’re not going to be masked police,” he said.
At the Inland Center mall in San Bernardino, Santa Claus was already wearing a face mask, said mall spokesman Terry Relph.
“Santa is very law abiding,” she said. “Santa will be wearing a mask.”
Until now, clients have had a choice of whether or not to wear a face mask posing for photos with Santa Claus, Relph said. Come on Wednesday, she said, wearing a face mask will no longer be mandatory.
Jackie Wu, whose family owns the Top 10 Nails and Spa in Riverside, said they asked customers to wear masks inside, but “we don’t force them if they don’t want to.”
“Forcing people to do something doesn’t help the business; they’ll just go somewhere that doesn’t make them do what they disagree with, ”Wu said.
Wu believes the mask requirement won’t change anything as customers will still do what they want. Most people wear masks at the nail salon because of the dust and fumes, she said. Hopefully people will use common sense if they feel unwell – but just in case, the staff will check the temperature and put on masks “for our own protection and comfort.”
Alison Gomez, an employee of the Flinderstreet Café in Chino, said the small, family-run café employs fewer than 10 people. They are all fully vaccinated, but will likely continue to wear masks “of their choice … especially now, with the new COVID-19 strain.”
“We didn’t impose too much masks (on staff and clients), but I’m not sure what will happen now, with the mandate,” Gomez said. “We have to see. … I don’t think it will have a big impact on the business; even during the closing time, we were very busy with food to go. “
John Andrews, a spokesman for the Diocese of San Bernardino, which oversees Catholic churches in Riverside and San Bernardino counties, said Monday afternoon it was unclear how the order would affect church services.
“We have complied with state health and safety guidelines,” Andrews said. “Obviously we’re going to pay attention to this.”
He added that many parishioners continue to wear masks at Mass.
Jose Arballo Jr., spokesman for the Riverside County Department of Public Health, said health officials are considering a new mandate.
“The activation date of December 15th gives us a little time to figure out how we’re going to move forward,” Arballo said.
Government officials say they understand that many are tired of the coronavirus-related restrictions.
“To be honest, neither did I.” California Secretary of Health and Human Services Dr. Mark Gali said Monday. “However, this is a critical moment where we have a tool that we know has worked and can work.”
Staff writer Allison Escobar and the Associated Press contributed to this report.