CHICAGO (NewsNation Now) — The fight over mask mandates in schools across the nation is getting next-level insane, from yelling and throwing punches to the even more bizarre.
A parent in Texas decided to take his clothes off to argue in favor of keeping masks on in schools.
James Akers stripped down to his underwear at a heated school board meeting near Austin, as he compared requiring masks to having to follow other rules like wearing clothes at work or following the speed limit.
“I do not like government, or any other entity — just ask my wife — telling me what to do,” he said. “But, sometimes I’ve got to push the envelope a little bit, and I’ve just decided that I’m going to not just talk about it, but I’m going to walk the walk.”
Officers did not remove him, but he put his clothes back on at the board president’s request before leaving the microphone, NewsNation affiliate KXAN reported.
“It’s simple protocol, people,” he said. “We follow certain rules. We follow certain rules for a very good reason.”
In Northern California, police say a father assaulted a teacher who stepped in during a dispute with a principal over mask rules at an elementary school earlier this month.
The father became irate when he saw his daughter come out of school wearing a mask, but teachers in a lounge were unmasked.
Vaccinated staff are allowed to take off their masks if students aren’t present, said Amador County Unified School District Superintendent Torie Gibson.
The teacher reportedly had lacerations, bruising, and was even taken to the hospital.
The parent is now reportedly facing misdemeanor charges. “On Balance” reached out to them, but have not heard back.
Gibson joined “On Balance” to talk about the pressure teachers face.
“We are exactly on the week two mark of school today, and things have definitely died down considerably,” Gibson said. “I think parents are seeing the importance of it now. And even though they’re not enjoying their children having to wear a mask.”
She says her teachers are trying to make the kids more comfortable.
“In California, if people are outdoors, they can definitely have their masks off,” Gibson said. “So a lot of our teachers have built those outdoor classroom spaces for students.”
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The Associated Press and NewsNation affiliate KXAN contributed to this report.