LA mayor says he doesn’t need mask when he holds breath

California health law requires everyone, including the vaccinated, to wear a mask in public indoor settings

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti has defended a photo which showed him maskless with basketball player Magic Johnson at SoFi Stadium, arguing that he didn’t need a mask because he held his breath.

Johnson posted a photo with Garcetti at the stadium on Sunday and the pair received immediate criticism for failing to adhere to the venue’s Covid-19 restrictions, which require masks to be worn at all times unless eating or drinking, per the Los Angeles County’s health orders.

Hanging out at SoFi Stadium today!

— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) January 31, 2022

Garcetti – who has been nominated by President Joe Biden to become US ambassador to India – dismissed the criticism on Wednesday, however, by arguing that a mask is unnecessary if you hold your breath.

I wore my mask the entire game and when people ask for a photograph I hold my breath

The mayor went on to claim that “there is a zero percent chance of infection” if you hold your breath. However, there are no CDC recommendations on “holding your breath” and MIT Medical has stated that “in all likelihood, it’s not at all helpful” to hold your breath to avoid infection of Covid-19. The California Department of Health requires everyone in the state, whether they’re vaccinated or not, to wear a mask at all times in public indoor settings.

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