CA: Age and Sex
Persons under 5 years, 6.0%
Persons under 18 years, 22.5%
Persons 65 years and over, 14.8%
FL: Age and Sex
Persons under 5 years, 5.3%
Persons under 18 years, 19.7%
Persons 65 years and over, 20.9%
To me, it would seem difficult to mandate a mask policy when it doesn't appear that it necessarily produces a different outcome.
That premise is incorrect. Florida locked down tight in all the major population counties at the start. You can't apply DeSantis' 'rule' in Florida to all the Counties (where the cast majority of the population live). Right now we're back in a mask mandated period where I live and every single business, every employee has been wearing masks for weeks. I never quit wearing a mask. Plexiglass dividers are still everywhere. Masks are being worn by a good 90% of the people I see.
We had a period where things got lax, but the numbers took off again and (most) people acted responsibly again with our County Manager mandating mask wearing again. It's true DeSantis has cut the 'teeth' out of enforcing the mandate (can't shut down businesses that don't comply now), but businesses are responding to being publicly called out. It's also true that "red" counties have followed DeSantis' garbage rules and screwed up stats for the State. Summer was a -------- because of DeSantis and people listening to him. Just like Spring Break was.
Also major corporations here shut down all operations at their facilities. There is no going into the plant to work. You can't to it at my company without a waiver from the plant manager, and an OK from your boss and your bosses boss. We're all working from home - unless you're in tourism (where Disney/Universal/Sea World, etc. have implemented masking requirements for everyone, put sanitizer stations everywhere, and more, or grocery/restaurants/small businesses. All despite DeSantis. Thank goodness most responsible Corporations are saying "thanks, but no thanks!" to DeSantis 'rules'.
Also, the author of the article has it wrong with schools in Florida. Yes, classrooms are open with strict requirements, masking, physical distancing, directional paths, etc. however virtual (remote) and hybrid are all fully active and funded through 2021. This article grossly oversimplifies everything trying to make some point that just isn't there.
Even with that we're having quarantines going on and off over and over here for students, teachers, vendors, support staff. People are getting sick.
I'm also going to point out this obvious admission in the article:
The number of cases (per capita) reported are still much higher in Florida and the hospitalizations are twice as high in Florida. Florida also got hit later in the cycle - so the numbers are skewed a bit.
Compare the two graphs:
You can see CA had it under control until recently, and there are reasons for the spike for CA. Florida never fully got it together as a State, and the only good numbers are due to major counties giving DeSantis the finger.