#Consumer Affairs
Target:
Walmart, Kroger, Costco, Target, Whole Foods, Menards, Trader Joe's, Mustard Seed, The Fresh Market,
Region:
United States of America

IT GOES WITHOUT SAYING that during a health crisis in which a “state of emergency” has been declared (both locally and nationally), ALL paying customers should have reasonably unfettered access to area supermarkets and grocery store venues for the purchase of food, toiletries, essential household goods, and small appliances for their survival. In fact, the very survival of the population depends on it, particularly when government authorities urge or even order citizens to quarantine themselves at home.

As the self-imposed “distribution network” for consumer goods and essentials, grocery retailers that are open for business during a crisis have a DUTY to make every effort to allow the entry of paying customers who conduct themselves in a peaceful and lawful manner. This is particularly true regarding those supermarket chains who enjoyed excessive tax breaks and other economic incentives in exchange for opening their stores, as well as public services such as around-the-clock protection from taxpayer-funded fire and police that they continue to benefit from. Short of being unruly, violent, or engaging in unlawful conduct on the premises, consumers should not suffer harassment, humiliation, or discrimination regarding the exercise of their personal health choices and decisions.

Sadly, reports from across the country are surfacing regarding supermarkets and grocery stores PROHIBITING the entry of customers who refuse to wear a mask or other face-covering, including those who are not displaying obvious signs of infection symptomology. Aside from those who believe these “masking mandates” are oppressive to their civil liberties and personal health freedoms, millions of Americans have discovered that masking their faces negatively affects their health and mental well-being. Furthermore, a growing number of scientists, physicians, and health experts are publicly asserting that masking is not only useless in stopping the spread of Covid-19, but in many instances, may actually increase the risk of NEGATIVE health outcomes for the mask wearer.

In their defense, targeted stores are asserting that their mandatory mask-wearing policies were created to “protect” all consumers entering the store from spreading the Coronavirus to each other, even though they have NO EVIDENCE to substantiate such a claim. On the contrary, according to the American Medical Association:

“Face masks should be used only by individuals who have symptoms of respiratory infection such as coughing, sneezing, or, in some cases, fever. Face masks should also be worn by healthcare workers, by individuals who are taking care of or are in close contact with people who have respiratory infections, or otherwise as directed by a doctor. Face masks should not be worn by healthy individuals to protect themselves from acquiring respiratory infection because there is no evidence to suggest that face masks worn by healthy individuals are effective in preventing people from becoming ill. Face masks should be reserved for those who need them because masks can be in short supply during periods of widespread respiratory infection. Because N95 respirators require special fit testing, they are not recommended for use by the general public.” (Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA); April 21, 2020 Volume 323, Number 15.

It is also worth noting that the same grocery chains that are suddenly declaring that their mandatory masking policies are for the “greater good” have absolutely no qualms about selling to their consumers such health-harming products as cigarettes, alcohol, artery-clogging processed meats, heavily sweetened junk food and beverages, toxic chemical-loaded produce, endocrine-disrupting personal care products, household cleaning products respiratory-poisoning chemicals, and glyphosate-contaminated foods, a highly toxic herbicide labeled as “probably carcinogenic to humans” by the W.H.O. Perhaps their sudden affection for the public health concerns of their customers would be better demonstrated by clearing their shelves of such hazardous, immune system-damaging materials.

In any case, an OPTIONAL-ONLY policy for supermarkets and grocery stores located in jurisdictions where authorities are not mandating masks for such activities would give BOTH types of customers, those in favor and those who are against wearing masks and face-coverings, to make their own health choices. Of course, those customers who truly believe that wearing a mask in a store provides "effective protection" against spreading or contracting Covid-19 should have no legitimate concern that those who don’t want to wear them would be a threat.

To date, the grocery stores, supermarket chains, and similar food-retailing businesses known to enforce unilaterally created mask and face-covering policies not mandated by their local authorities include, but are not limited to: Walmart, Inc. ("Walmart), The Kroger Company ("Kroger"), Costco Wholesale Corporation ("Costco"); Target Brands, Inc. (“Target”); Mustard Seed Market & Café ("Mustard Seed"); Menards, Inc.; Trader Joe's; The Fresh Market, Inc.; Wegmans Food Markets ("Wegmans"); and Whole Foods Market IP. L.P. (“Whole Foods”).

Based on the foregoing, WE, THE UNDERSIGNED:

(1) Hereby OPPOSE any and all grocery stores, supermarkets, and similar food-retailing venues with unilaterally created and enforced mandates NOT required by local authorities that prohibit shoppers from entering the premises without wearing a mask or other face-covering apparel.

(2) Hereby PLEDGE TO SUPPORT and patronize ONLY those grocery stores, supermarkets, and similar food-retailing venues with guilt-free, pressure-free policies that honor shoppers' personal preferences regarding whether or not to wear a mask or other face-covering apparel. Furthermore, WE PLEDGE TO PRIORITIZE said grocery stores, supermarkets, and similar food-retailing venues when making future shopping decisions in gratitude for not contributing to the anxiety of an already difficult situation regarding Covid-19 social distancing restrictions.

(3) Hereby PLEDGE TO BOYCOTT any and all grocery stores, supermarkets, and similar food-retailing venues with unilaterally created and enforced mandates NOT required by local authorities that prohibit shoppers from entering the premises without wearing a mask or other face-covering apparel, and PLEDGE to encourage others within our influence to do the same.

(4) Hereby AFFIRM that said BOYCOTT shall continue uninterrupted until such time as the offending grocery stores, supermarkets, and similar food-retailing venues publicly RESCIND their policies that pressure or prohibit customers from entering the premises without wearing a mask or other face-covering apparel.

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The STOP Mandatory Mask Policies Against Customers By Grocery Stores And Supermarkets! petition to Walmart, Kroger, Costco, Target, Whole Foods, Menards, Trader Joe's, Mustard Seed, The Fresh Market, was written by Joseph Delgado and is in the category Consumer Affairs at GoPetition.