As mentioned in previous articles, in times of need and crisis, especially during the pandemic, residents of Berkshire County come together and help out one another. I've heard it in on-air interviews as well as casual conversation and even in local public service announcements that Berkshire County residents along with Berkshire nonprofit organizations have assisted those affected by the pandemic by donating food, money, clothing, housing, and other household-related items. Plus, you can't forget about the Berkshire Vaccine Collaborative. This group has vaccinated thousands upon thousands of Berkshire County residents and by doing so has saved many lives.

I must admit that other than driving to and from work along with grocery shopping, I don't get out that much socially as my wife and I have a two-year-old and we're trying to keep her as healthy as possible until there's a vaccination for her age group. Plus, I'm a kidney transplant patient which means I am immune-compromised. However, with the weather being warmer, the three of us have been enjoying the outdoors and walks in the neighborhood. I say all of this because I'm in a bit of a bubble and I don't see too many things that happen in public.

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With all of the great things Berkshire County residents are doing to support each other, my mother recently told me a story where one of her friends was out doing some shopping in the Berkshires. Her friend chose to keep his mask on as he's an older gentleman. While he was out, another person who wasn't wearing a mask was harassing him for choosing to wear one. What was his reaction? He simply lifted up his mask and said "I just had covid" and slid his mask back over his nose and mouth.

I understand that many Berkshire County towns no longer require people to wear masks inside of buildings but come on. If you feel uncomfortable being maskless in public, it's your right to wear one as you have a choice. You shouldn't have to worry about being mocked or harrassed about your decision especially if you're minding your own business. Politics aside, that's just simple common courtesy and respect for your fellow citizens. Wouldn't you agree? I know this is just one incident in the Berkshires but I can't imagine that it's the only one. Have you encountered mask bullying in Berkshire County and how did you handle it?

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