Maskless fans at football game embarrassment, danger to Baylor community

AB Boyd | Cartoonist

The video footage of fans without masks at Baylor’s home opener was embarrassing.

To see a number of students without masks, crowded together and broadcasted on national television, is so disheartening after all the measures being taken by the Baylor community to slow the spread and allow fans to attend sports games.

We shouldn’t be having this conversation at this point in the semester. Mask-wearing is a normal practice for us now, and to neglect this safety measure in a crowded, public setting is negligent and beyond inconsiderate.

Not only is this reckless and dangerous to the health of our community, but it puts Baylor in a negative light despite everything the university has done to keep us safe and on campus.

Maybe you aren’t concerned about the health of your peers and community — but think about Baylor. The university has been committed to keeping students, faculty and staff on campus, and it’s rude and selfish to risk the hard work, modifications and money spent just so you can be more “comfortable” at the football game.

The Waco Tribune-Herald published an article with the headline “Social distancing in question after Baylor’s first game.” Included in the article was a photo of students at the game, many of whom were pictured without masks.

The article said, “Students caught up in the emotion of Baylor’s first football game following three COVID-19-related cancellations couldn’t keep their paws off each other at times. They high-fived, jostled, hugged and celebrated as fans do. Forget staying 6 feet apart, they were crowding 6 inches.”

Additionally, Scott Chasen, Kansas beat writer for 247 Sports and CBS Sports, tweeted out a USA Today photo of a large crowd of students with no masks on.

The tweet said, “Here’s a look at the Baylor crowd: Just FYI, #kufball has said you will be kicked out of the stadium if you don’t wear a mask/socially distance next Saturday.”

Baylor’s lack of mask-wearing and social distancing clearly attracted attention from people outside of the Baylor community.

Those of you who attended the game and ignored the rules are the same people who are going to take away this opportunity of a somewhat normal football season. It’s not fair to the other fans who are abiding by the rules. You may think that you’re only one person, but it makes a difference. You are harming yourself by risking losing attendance privileges at future sporting events this semester.

While there were conflicting reports on how Baylor was enforcing social distancing and mask rules at the game, ultimately, it’s up to the fans to make their own decisions. There’s too many people for the staff to monitor. Don’t wait until you’re told to put on your mask or social distance to abide by the rules.

We get it — the masks are annoying. It’s hard to talk, it’s hot, sweaty and uncomfortable. But is taking them off worth risking a no-fan football season? Definitely not.