One thing has become very clear during the Covid-19 pandemic. The rules differ greatly from state to state. The state’s governor has a lot of power. For example, in some states, like California, face masks are currently required in school (although not for long). In other states, like Florida, mandating face masks in school is illegal.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is opposed to mandates for face masks and vaccines. He asserted his stance most recently at a press conference that was held at Middleton High School in Tampa, Florida.

A group of students was standing on the stage. All of them were wearing face masks. Then, DeSantis walked towards the stage, but before turning to the microphone and addressing the press, he addressed the students.

DeSantis told the students, “You do not have to wear those masks. I mean, please take them off. Honestly, it’s not doing anything. We’ve got to stop with this COVID theater. So if you wanna wear it, fine, but this is ridiculous.”

Watch the video below to see this interaction for yourself.

As you can see in the video, some of the students took DeSantis’ advice and removed their face masks while a few students decided to leave their face masks on.

Just like there was a difference in reaction among the students, there has been a difference in reaction among people who have watched the video.

Let’s start with the reaction from parents.

Kevin Brown Sr. told WFLA that his son, Kevin Brown Jr., was one of the students on stage. He believes the governor was out of line for what he said to the students. Brown Sr. explained, “His mother tells him to wear the mask. I tell him it’s his choice, so he made that choice and the governor has no right to tell no kid or no one that they can or can’t wear a mask. He doesn’t have that right.”

Brown Jr. was one of the students who decided to keep his face mask on after DeSantis’ comments. He explained, “I thought about it and it’s my right to have my mask on.”

Dawn Marshall’s son Eric was also on stage, but Eric decided to take his face mask off. Marshall said she had told her son to wear a face mask, and she doesn’t like the governor telling her son to do otherwise. She explained, “He pretty much said, ‘Take off your mask, it’s stupid,’ and ‘Take off your mask, your parents don’t matter.'”

Christina Pushaw, DeSantis’ press secretary, defended the governor on twitter. In response to Marshall’s comments during her interview, she questioned why Marshall chose not to wear a face mask during her interview if she is so in favor of face masks.

As far as the governor’s comments about face masks, Pushaw tweeted, “I mean, someone had to say it, after 2 years of propaganda that terrified and manipulated young people. Breathe free, feel safe and be happy.”

Meanwhile, Fox host Laura Ingram also defended DeSantis. She tweeted, “Someone needs to break through the brainwashing—@GovRonDeSantis did it.”

Do you think Governor DeSantis was bullying students by telling them to remove their face masks? Do you think students should wear face masks at school?