A Grand Junction restaurant has apparently flexed its muscles, and it looks like it's going to be okay.

The Outlaw Cafe located in the Cottonwood Mall on Highway 6 & 50 has taken a stand against restrictions put in place by public health officials. Masks are not worn by employees at the Outlaw, nor are masks required of customers.

I noticed this post on Facebook today.

<https://www.facebook.com/richardm2/posts/10221864813636934 As everybody knows, America is divided today on everything from political platforms and religious beliefs,  to putting ketchup on hotdogs and wearing masks. It should come as no surprise to anyone that the Outlaw's stance on mask-wearing has been met with mixed reaction. On the Outlaw Cafe Facebook page, there seems to be quite a bit of support for the restaurant and the stand they are making. Others, it would appear, are taking their business elsewhere. That right there is the beauty of this situation. This is still America - land of the free- and we are free to choose where we want to take out business.

If you disagree with the Outlaw's stance, the correct course of action would be to respect their view and quietly go somewhere else for breakfast. By the same token, those who support the no-mask policy should show respect to those who have a different perspective. Unfortunately, in today's world, this line of two-way respect in spite of differences seems to have disappeared. We see this in a big way when it comes to mask-wearing.

The bigger question is this. Will we begin to see other restaurants follow suit and defy the public orders set down by Colorado Governor Jared Polis and Mesa County Public Health? While some customers would be happy about a no-mask policy, others would be mad about it and may choose to take their business elsewhere. If I'm a restaurant owner, do I want to take that risk? Will my losses or rewards be greater if I comply or if I defy?

One fact is, Mesa County has been extremely fortunate through the pandemic - opening up at a much more rapid pace than most places. Little by little, we are opening up more and more and restricting less and less. For some individuals, the opening process isn't happening fast enough, and, of course, we all wish it could happen faster. But, I think the important thing is that we are making progress. I would think small steps forward are better than no steps at all - and far better than taking steps backward.

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