A ‘snapshot’ of America’s mask rules driving from Florida to Washington

Dec 21, 2021, 5:12 AM | Updated: 7:22 am
People wear masks at an indoor mall in New York. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

As you cross the country, there are a lot of differences to take note of when it comes to gas prices, COVID restrictions and mask wearing (or lack thereof), and speed limits.

Fill-in host Matt Markovich on KIRO Radio’s Dori Monson Show just drove from Florida to Washington and shared some of the things he noticed, “like a snapshot” of America.

Markovich made the drive with his son, who he says is now a licensed twin-engine commercial pilot. His son has a dog who is not allowed to fly on the plane, as it is not a service animal and airlines have changed their rules about letting pets in the cargo hold.

“So we rented a car, started from Jacksonville, and starting last Wednesday, basically kind of drove straight to Seattle in two and a half days. We put on 3,062 miles in two and a half days,” he said.

They went through 10 states — Florida, Georgia, Tennessee, Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, Utah, Oregon and Washington.

“So all those 10 states that we went through, … all the way up to Oregon, are red states. Nobody wore a mask. Nobody,” he said. “There weren’t signs on gas station doors, on the restaurant doors, on the fast takeout — the McDonalds, the Taco Bells. No requirement to wear a mask.”

At some places, he says, the employees were wearing masks, but customers weren’t.

“I didn’t see anybody wearing a mask from Florida until I got to Oregon where a couple drivers were wearing masks,” he said. “And then when you get to Washington state, I couldn’t go into a truck stop without a mask and get my gas.”

“So what does that say about our country and whether or not that’s a good thing?” he asked listeners. “… Are we ahead of the game in Washington state and Oregon in terms of requiring masks? And is that working?”

Listen to Matt Markovich’s full story in Monday’s “Fastest 15:”

Listen to the Dori Monson Show weekday afternoons from noon – 3 p.m. on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

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A ‘snapshot’ of America’s mask rules driving from Florida to Washington