In 2020, there's not much more controversial than people's decision to wear, or not wear, a face covering when out amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Celebrities, politicians, and everyday people have preached the importance of wearing one to help slow the spread of the virus, and, by now, it's almost second nature to mask up when you leave the house. That's why when Queen Elizabeth and Prince William didn't wear masks to a royal engagement, fans were not happy.
The Queen stepped out for her first public event since the pandemic broke out in March alongside Prince William and a handful of other people on Oct. 15 at The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory to help open the organization's new state-of-the-art Energetics Analysis Centre.
During their time at the Dstl, the Queen and William "met a number of scientists at a social distance who explained how Dstl’s science and technology keeps the public safe by detecting explosives, helping to identify terrorist networks, and analyzing vital forensic evidence to help bring those involved in terrorism to justice," according to the organization's website.
While Dstl confirmed in the above statement on their website that the two members of the royal family were practicing social distancing, after photos of them not wearing masks surfaced, people on Twitter were quick to slam The Queen and her grandson.
"Queen Elizabeth not wearing a mask? I mean c'mon now. You're 94!!" one Twitter user wrote. Another shared, "It was a mistake not to set an example and wear a mask."
Royal reporter Omid Scobie stepped in on Twitter to reveal that precautions were, in fact, taken by the Queen and her staff. "No masks for anyone at today’s engagement, but Buckingham Palace confirm that the Queen consulted her own doctors and all staff at @dstlmod tested negative before the visit," he wrote.
Still, people had a lot to say, especially noting that despite testing negative, the royals wearing masks would have been a good visual for the public to see.
Hopefully The Queen and William will continue to play it safe, but fans are urging them to lead by example next time.