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Lexington lawyer says mask mandates are constitutional

Published: Jul. 7, 2020 at 5:32 PM EDT
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Wearing a mask in public is not currently mandated in Kentucky but it’s a growing trend in other places.

Violaters face warnings and fines for not wearing face coverings in some states.

Viral videos show fights breaking out over the issue, but a Lexington lawyer says the government can impose the rule.

Governor Andy Beshear says he will consider mandating masks if the number of COVID-19 cases increases.

Lexington lawyer Scott White says many counties, cities and states are enforcing the rule with fines.

White says a blanket rule requiring masks also has to account for exceptions such as certain medical conditions and the age of a child.

White compares enforcing face masks to using a seatbelt. He says it is constitutional to enforce people to wear a mask in public.

“The government, To promote the public health, to protect people, is not willing to rely on people to voluntarily do the right thing and so the public good outweighs and individual’s civil liberty,” said White.

Gov. Beshear first encouraged Kentuckians to wear masks May 11.

Businesses have the right to ask people to leave if they are not wearing a mask.

The CDC recommends everyone wear a mask in public, except for those aged two-years-old and younger.

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