US President Donald Trump wears a face mask during a visit to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre in Bethesda, Maryland, on July 11. Trump has recently backtracked and expressed support for wearing masks after months of suggesting that they were a political statement against him. Photo: AP US President Donald Trump wears a face mask during a visit to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre in Bethesda, Maryland, on July 11. Trump has recently backtracked and expressed support for wearing masks after months of suggesting that they were a political statement against him. Photo: AP
US President Donald Trump wears a face mask during a visit to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre in Bethesda, Maryland, on July 11. Trump has recently backtracked and expressed support for wearing masks after months of suggesting that they were a political statement against him. Photo: AP
Hugo Drochon
Opinion

Opinion

Hugo Drochon

America’s polarisation over face masks a symptom of deeper culture war

  • The pandemic and the protests of recent months should serve as a reminder of a simple truth: a mask is just a mask. What matters for democracy is not whether people cover their faces in public, but which people do so and why

US President Donald Trump wears a face mask during a visit to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre in Bethesda, Maryland, on July 11. Trump has recently backtracked and expressed support for wearing masks after months of suggesting that they were a political statement against him. Photo: AP US President Donald Trump wears a face mask during a visit to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre in Bethesda, Maryland, on July 11. Trump has recently backtracked and expressed support for wearing masks after months of suggesting that they were a political statement against him. Photo: AP
US President Donald Trump wears a face mask during a visit to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Centre in Bethesda, Maryland, on July 11. Trump has recently backtracked and expressed support for wearing masks after months of suggesting that they were a political statement against him. Photo: AP
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Hugo Drochon

Hugo Drochon

Hugo Drochon, assistant professor of political theory at the University of Nottingham, is the author of Nietzsche’s Great Politics.