In a shocking incident, more than a hundred anti-vaxxers and anti-maskers in Idaho’s Boise burnt face masks to protest against coronavirus restrictions imposed upon cities. The mask burning, which took place in front of the Idaho Capitol on Saturday also included children who were encouraged by their parents to burn the masks. Videos posted on social media showed adults encouraging children to toss masks into a fire inside a trash can outside the steps to the state Capitol building. The protestors have alleged that wearing masks takes away their freedom, their rights and are a restriction of their freedoms. The anti-maskers also protested against President Joe Biden, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senator Chuck Schummer.
Oregon Public Broadcasting reporter Sergio Olmos posted a series of photos and videos where children are seen being encouraged by elders to burn face masks. A protestor burned a surgical mask with ‘Joe Biden Sucks’ written on it.
A signboard carried by one protestor at the site said, “No masks, no mandates. Our face, our mind.”
Another one had a Benjamin Franklin quote, “Those who give up liberty to purchase safety deserve neither liberty or safety.”
A child says “here fire, you hungry? here’s another mask”A mask burning rally in boise, Idaho pic.twitter.com/MqNnaEKBP0
— Sergio Olmos (@MrOlmos) March 6, 2021
Republican Governor Brad Little has never issued a statewide mask mandate, but seven counties and 11 cities have such mandates in place.
Most netizens criticised the mask burning videos and expressed their shock and anger at the mask burning.
Imagine explaining the mask burning in Idaho to frontline workers who couldn’t get masks to safely perform their jobs last year— Alvin (@alvie_barr) March 7, 2021
The biggest issues are Governors like Abbott & DeSantis, mask burners in Idaho & the fools that refuse to wear masks and get vaccinated when eligible.— Eileen aka RedHeadedResister (@evelez704) March 7, 2021
Just now hearing about this Idaho mask burning rally and why do we have to be so weird all the time?— Chris Rongey (@ChrisRongey) March 7, 2021
Dear mask burning folks in Idaho: Rejecting science is not anti-elite; it’s not owning the libs; it’s just plain stupid.The virus spreads through respiratory droplets. Masks help prevent the spread. Masks help save lives. You are putting your family at increased risk. https://t.co/GmgSVqEFql
— Ted Lieu (@tedlieu) March 6, 2021
Wait until #Idaho get #COVID again; and they will be sorry. That is very disrespectful to use children to burn their face mask. That is a negative way to teach your children. COVID is not going away anytime soon and we must deal with the pandemic.— Ms. Christine 💕 (@christinek2010) March 7, 2021
It is so tempting to want to identify all those mask-burners in Idaho and ensure none of them receive the $1,400 Covid Relief funds or any future Covid Relief funds. So, so tempting.— ElleryForDemocracy🌊🏳️🌈 (@ElleryInPhx) March 7, 2021
Regarding all those ppl I've seen in pics today celebrating the lifted mask restrictions & those ppl and children burning masks in Idaho: I'm not gonna be mean & call you names; I'll just wish you luck that you won't end up wishing you had kept wearing them.— Gail Hurd (@Galylynn) March 7, 2021
Yes, we can. I live in Idaho and have faithfully worn my mask, social distanced, and stopped nonessential travel for a year now. These yahoos DO NOT represent all Idahoans!— Bailey Boo (@Beaches_1989) March 7, 2021
The protest was organized in part by North Idaho Representative Heather Scott and Representative Dorothy Moon, who have thrown their support behind the mask burning protests.
An Idaho State Police spokesperson had informed the Insider that the protestors were informed of the rule both before and during the mask burning event that open flames are not allowed at State Capitol grounds and the incident will be reviewed.