Kentucky School Mask Mandate Has Superintendent Calling Beshear A ‘Liberal Lunatic,’ But The Gov.’s Order Is Reasonable

Andy Beshear
Gov. Andy Beshear.

Another deranged response to Gov. Andy Beshear’s mask mandate has us wondering: Do people realize he’s just asking kids to put a piece of cloth over their mouths?

A superintendent of a school district near Somerset, Jimmy Dyehouse, sent a voicemail to families Tuesday night, calling Beshear a “liberal lunatic” for instating the mask mandate.

“What this means is the professional opinion of your superintendent doesn’t matter,” said Dyehouse in the voicemail, obtained by WKYT News. “The opinion of your school board doesn’t matter. And you as parents, your opinion doesn’t matter because I know exactly how you all feel about your children wearing masks. And believe me, I’m as frustrated as you are over this.”

A look at the Science Hill Independent School District’s dress code shows that the school system does not allow students to wear spaghetti straps, midriff bearing shirts or clothing with rude references (among other requirements) So, policing what students wear is not a problem for the district. 

Of course, it wasn’t a state mandate that set those rules. But, Beshear isn’t requiring masks just because he wants to flex his power; there are serious health reasons — and the data to back it up. And besides, there's no evidence that masks are harmful to healthy individuals.

Since the Delta variant has taken hold in Kentucky, hospitalizations for children due to COVID have gone up in Kentucky. 

Norton Healthcare in Louisville reported yesterday that it has 10 pediatric patients in its children’s hospital, with four in intensive care and two on ventilators, according to the Courier Journal. Just two months ago, it was rare for the hospital to have any pediatric COVID patients in its rooms.  The Kentucky Children’s Hospital in Lexington has also reported a recent increase in young patients. 

Masks may be virtually harmless, but there have been worrisome trends connected to remote learning in schools. At JCPS, thousands of kids dropped out of sight for the school system when virtual learning began, according to the Courier Journal. In Las Vegas, suicide rates increased. In Kentucky, child abuse reports plunged, even though other trends suggested that actual abuse rates weren't, according to WFPL.

In a post still up on the Science Hill website, Dyehouse said he and his “team” had decided that masks would not be required for students after an “outstanding job” the year before keeping kids safe. 

Well, the Delta variant wasn't prominent in Kentucky last year.

If we want to keep children safe while still allowing them to attend school in person, masks are a must. And, Dyehouse is irresponsible for allowing children in his district to go without. Dangerously so. Hence why Beshear had to step in. And now, Dyehouse is saying he will comply with the order.