Study: Mask Mandates Increase Rates of COVID Compared to States with No Mask MandatesProtective-mask mandates aimed at combating the spread of the CCP virus that causes the disease COVID-19 appear to promote its spread, according to a report from RationalGround.com, a clearinghouse of COVID-19 data trends that’s run by a grassroots group of data analysts, computer scientists, and actuaries. Researchers examined cases covering a 229-day period running from May 1 through Dec. 15 and compared the days in which state governments had imposed mask mandates and the days when they hadn’t. “The reverse correlation between periods of masking and non-masking is remarkable,” RationalGround.com co-founder Justin Hart tweeted on Dec. 20. Supporters of the protective-mask mandates might say that the mandates were often imposed once cases already spread quickly, so there’s a negative bias of increased cases in those areas (or times) that had mandates in place, but there was “no evidence of any reduction in cases or even better outcomes many weeks later,” Horowitz writes. RationalGround.com researcher Ian Miller discovered that three counties in Florida—Manatee, Martin, and Nassau—that let their mandates expire, had fewer cases per capita than those counties that kept the mandate. Miller tweeted sarcastically on Dec. 20 that it was “extremely confusing how this could happen, considering” the pro-mandate side’s claim that protective masks “are the single most important public health tool we have” and that masks “provide protection for the wearer, too.” “The mask religion will have a number of inaccurate excuses ready to go, but of course, they’re obscuring and ignoring that this should not be possible, no matter what the mitigating circumstances, if masks were as effective or important as we were told,” Miller wrote. Nor, according to Miller, has the protective-mask mandate worked in states such as California, where it was imposed long before the surge in cases began.