Isn’t it abundantly clear that masking and hiding from the virus just lead to the big spike in flu this year? It didn’t work.
I think the initial carnage lead to the prolonged restrictions. As the virus weakened faster that restrictions were lifted... Once we had a weaker virus is was easier to see we could've/should've opened up a faster... Just that first 6 months was it, really pushed it.
I recall the mental twisting to explain why it was ok to sit at a bar without a mask and share bathrooms with dozens of strangers, but how it wasn't ok to sit in your friend's basement without a mask.
Timeline might be twisted a bit... Bars were closed for a long time that summer, though you could sit on patios etc., I recall even sitting at window on a patio, they opened the window and I watched baseball as they served though the window over an inside booth. Then bars had the glass (that was funny) and distancing of stools... By then I'm not sure there were house raids about poker parties but they did shut down 'nightclub' like parties.. So long ago now... Time is a funny thing.