It might seem elementary to write this open letter but it certainly can't hurt. The divide over COVID-19, masks, vaccinations, and the related is very evident in our lives, especially through social media. Is it really necessary?

A great example of this open letter is an off-air conversation I had with a gentleman who called to question me after I said I got both COVID-19 vaccinations because I trust science. "What do you mean but trust science?"

He did not have a sarcastic or argumentative tone in his voice. He simply asked a question. I could have easily taken a defensive stance, but I calmly explained my point in a little deeper detail. He followed up with his thoughts on the matter, in a non-argumentative or aggressive manner.

The points we made to each other are not important for this article. What is important is the idea that two people with different views were able to have a conversation, express their viewpoints, and understand each other's beliefs.

Neither he nor I pushed our stance on the other, leading to mutual respect and a pleasant "goodbye" as we ended the conversation. This is how those types of conversations should go.

With that said, here is my open letter to all Illinoisans as we transition into a more maskless lifestyle.

Dear Illinois,

It has been a long 14 months. Remember when we were told this would be a 14-day thing? We'd bend the curve in just a few short weeks? Little did we know how much our lives would change over the next 400ish days. In that time many of us have jumped in on following COVID-19-related requirements while others refused. This led to relationships falling apart for whatever reason, some of which because of beliefs differ. What a sad thing. Hopefully, those relationships can be mended.

As the state moves to the next phase or plan that brings residents closer to normalcy, I have a favor to ask. If a business you're willingly about to enter has a mask requirement sign, even if the mask requirement has been lived by the government, either honor the request or take your business elsewhere peacefully. There is no need to blast a business over mask requirements by mouth or through social media.

Furthermore, if you're in a public setting of any sort and you see someone wearing a mask, leave any negative thoughts you might have in your head. There's no need to ridicule someone for wearing a mask. I mean, what if they have a non-COVID-related illness that requires them to mask up?

The great thing about being human is we are all different, which should be embraced and celebrated.

Be nice. Play nice. Live nice.

Sincerely,

A Vaccinated-person who will not judge someone over a mask or whether they are or aren't vaccinated.

Construction Photos And More Of Rockford MetroCentre / BMO Harris Bank Center

JB Love is ½ of  Q98.5's Lil Zim & JB In The Morning, weekday mornings from 5:00 a.m. to 10 a.m. Follow him on Twitter, Instagram.

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