Governor Greg Abbott has made Wednesday, March 10, the date for Texas to fully reopen. That means there will be no mask mandate and businesses can open with 100 percent capacity. Economically, this makes sense. To be honest, Texas has pretty much ignored the pandemic anyway but with this news, I have some honest thoughts and requests of you as we move forward.

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This pandemic has been a nightmare. People have believed it, people have said it's fake. Having to wear a mask is a destruction of our freedoms, having to wear mask saves lives. I believe this pandemic is real. I had the virus in November of 2020, it sucked. Luckily, I didn't have to be hospitalized, just had to deal with pneumonia for a couple of weeks.

Some people were not so lucky. The virus attacked their body and killed them. The fact that people downplayed those deaths was downright disrespectful. Sure the survival rate is something like 95 percent, but that means that not everyone will survive. Discounting the deaths due to a high survival rate doesn't make the virus fake.

Wearing a mask has been a pain in the rear. It has. I don't like wearing one. But here's the thing, it does help. Helped so much that, in conjunction with the vaccine, Texas has been able to get to this point. Yes, the virus risk is still real. So continue to mask. That will only make things that much better as we move forward.

For those of you that have had no belief in any of this over the last year, cool. Here is my request, though, don't put someone down or look down on them in public or be passive aggressive and shame someone on social media because they continue to wear a mask. You have screamed at us about rights and freedoms this whole time, that's their right and freedom. Respect their decision and move on.

For those of you that have believed in this pandemic over the last year, cool. Here is my request, though, get your vaccine when it becomes available but stop acting like you're some kind of warrior for mankind. Yes, you're doing what you think is right but everyone doesn't need to know it. Do your part and move on.

One more thing, it is 100 percent the right of a business to ask you to wear a mask even with the restrictions now gone. If you have a problem with it, tough. Either don't shop there or put on a mask. Getting in the employee's face and yelling at them about how they're taking your freedoms away is ridiculous. They are exercising their freedoms, too. Respect that and move on, it's really as simple as that.

I'm happy that Texas is opening back up. It will help people get back to work and continue their lives. But be respectful of everyone's beliefs as we move forward. It really is a simple and easy thing to do and life will be so much easier for everyone.

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