As the debate over mask and vaccine mandates rages on, two states have taken the lead in the fight: Texas and Florida.
Now, one state’s Supreme Court has further bolstered the home-front in the fight against government mandates.
The Texas Supreme Court issued a major ruling Monday siding with the state’s governor, who has said that no public institutions can require masks. Schools have already indicated that they will fight the decision in other ways.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order earlier this year banning all mask mandates in public institutions, including public schools.
“The Lone Star State continues to defeat COVID-19 through the use of widely-available vaccines, antibody therapeutic drugs, and safe practices utilized by Texans in our communities,” said Governor Abbott. “Texans, not government, should decide their best health practices, which is why masks will not be mandated by public school districts or government entities. We can continue to mitigate COVID-19 while defending Texans’ liberty to choose whether or not they mask up.”
Some public schools that had challenged the order reversed course in light of the decision Monday.
“Now, Mesquite ISD’s obligation under the law is to fall back to the Governor’s order. Effective Monday, Aug. 16, masks will not be required in our buildings. However, in the strongest terms possible, MISD urges all students and staff members to wear masks as a precaution to protect others from the spread of COVID-19,” Mesquite ISD said.
Regardless, Dallas Independent School District has already indicated they plan to require masks regardless.
Gov. Abbott has said personal responsibility, not government mandates, is the way forward.
“The new Executive Order emphasizes that the path forward relies on personal responsibility rather than government mandates,” Gov. Abbott said. “Texans have mastered the safe practices that help to prevent and avoid the spread of COVID-19. They have the individual right and responsibility to decide for themselves and their children whether they will wear masks, open their businesses, and engage in leisure activities. Vaccines, which remain in abundant supply, are the most effective defense against the virus, and they will always remain voluntary – never forced – in the State of Texas.”