What to Say When Someone Asks You to Provide a Doctor’s Note For a Face Mask Exemption

A reader writes:

Hi Allan, 

My daughter’s school’s written mask policy only permits a “physician note” exception. 

My wife & I don’t have regular physicians. We haven’t had to visit one for 3~4 years (thank God).

Do we lie? Forge a note? Do we spend $150 on doctor visits that may or may not result in permission slips?

Curious how you’d handle this.

Thank you for your incredible service to the cause of liberty,

-A Caring Father 

Thank you for sending this policy and more importantly, thank you for reading this policy. You may have been the first person to have read it. Keeping that detail in mind, I’d take a deep breath, remind yourself that everyone is trying to feed you a narrative. Just start here:

1.) Presume the other is ignorant of their own policy. 

I really mean this. Don’t negotiate against yourself. It’s good that you are fully aware of the policy. Now make sure that you are clear about what you want and don’t for a second make assumptions that cause you to negotiate against yourself (and your daughter).

I think a phone conversation is far more effective than an email. This email, which you can also copy and paste, contains approximately what you need to say by phone:

Dear Principal Skinner,

I’d like to attend Wednesday’s graduation. I see you have a face mask policy. I’m unable to wear a face mask safely, so I want to give you advanced notice that I not be wearing one at my daughter’s graduation. Please confirm that you have received this.


Allan Stevo 

2.) If asked “Do you have a doctor’s note?” say “What exactly do you need on the doctor’s note?” 

Whether or not you have a doctor’s note, don’t be quick to give up that territory. Draw firm boundaries and make the other person explain themselves rather than you being put in a situation where you have to explain yourself.

3.) Liberally state “That doesn’t work for me,” and then be silent. I really mean that. 

The more you say this phrase, the more people tend to become subservient. When you are given an ultimatum or have a road block put in front of you, being able to kindly, gently, and sincerely say “That doesn’t work for me,” can be very effective.

4.) Spend as little time as possible with those who can’t bend the policy for you. Ideally, you will only ever talk to the decision maker, but that is easier said than done. 

If that approach described above doesn’t work, once you get the decision maker on the phone, try that again.

5.) Gentle ridicule may work, with the right person. 

With the decision maker, and only with the decision maker, it may be effective to gently ridicule the policy to get a little leeway. This can be done with sincere questions. It must be gentle.

Why do you require a doctors note? 

The CDC, state, and county policy don’t require doctors note. 

Where did you get the idea that a doctors note was a legitimate requirement to put on someone? 

What was the motivation to require a doctors note? 

What does the doctor’s note have to say in order for it to be acceptable? 

Who determines if a doctor’s note is acceptable? 

Can I please have a copy of the written policy on what is acceptable in a doctors note? 

What does the school define as a doctor? 

Don’t read down this list like a machine gun, but pepper them in to honest dialogue. This can really help soften a rigid policy.

The above list is an example of questions that will be both a sincere attempt at understanding the policy and effective at poking holes in the policy.

6.) Don’t see yourself as a pariah, recognize the benevolent work you are doing. 

What’s so good about this approach is that you are just shedding light on what is a very poorly thought out policy that they want you to believe is sound. It’s not sound. It’s poorly thought out and untested. Pressure often makes policies better. The face mask policies have largely been protected from all resistance and will all remain awful until pressure is exerted against them.

Someone along the food chain will think in their head “they caught us, the policy is bogus, we just hoped no one would question it, and it would be allowed to stand.”

That’s what you’re doing with questions like this.

A good face mask policy is the face mask policy that largely existed among free people before April 3, 2020: wear whatever you want on your face anytime you want and don’t ever put anything on your face that you don’t want on it. Given the fact that face masks don’t work to prevent the spread of a respiratory virus and also given the fact that many in the USA seek for it to be a free country, that’s the right face mask policy for fighting Covid-19. Your strategic resistance is helping to craft better policy more befitting the free and logical.

7.) Don’t argue the science with someone who doesn’t even understand the scientific method, which is basically every person involved in enforcing these policies, regardless of what fancy credentials they possess. 

IF YOUR CHOOSE TO TRY THIS METHOD, DO NOT SAY THAT FACE MASKS DON’T WORK. You are likely speaking to a mental midget trained to follow a flow chart. Just use his flow chart to your advantage. When you go off the flowchart, you cause him cognitive dissonance and internal strife. No matter how cool he seems, deal with the issue using his flowchart and have that resolved before you go down the route of evangelizing about how much better your version of the science is than the trillion dollar media machine and the cadre of establishment experts who have spent the last 14 months prepping this man for exactly this conversation about what a discredited wing-nut you must be for holding any of these ideas.

8.) If you really need to get legalistic, this is a direction that could work. 

There are lots of legal arguments to make against face masks. I don’t consider any of them better than the material above.

I would almost never write a letter like this, but if pressed, I would have a conversation in which I communicate this.

Dear Principal Skinner,

I’m writing to inform you that your face mask exemption creates an unlawful burden for me. 

I am unable to wear a face mask safely.  I do not see a doctor regularly and don’t even know what doctor would at this point write a note for a condition that he has not been treating for years. 

I seek to use your services and to do so unmasked. 


Allan Stevo 

This statement is really looking for trouble and opening a can of worms if sent by email. It is unlikely to get this matter any closer to resolution any more quickly. It’s possible that it could work by phone.

9.) What if they elevate “the policy” as some sort of deity that is not to be challenged? 

The above I sometimes use. This below is the technique that I almost always pursue and which almost always works whenever anyone is trying to elevate a policy as if it is some sort of deity.

Speak to another human, but do so directly and with authority.

Ask questions like this. (This is useful, by the way, for every policy on any topic):

Who created this policy? 

When was it created? 

Who agreed to it ? 

Who is able to change the policy? 

A summary of useful tools 

If you are communicating with someone on the phone and are at a loss, these are really useful tools:

1.) “I’m unable to wear a face mask safely.”

2.) “I’m coming Wednesday.”

3.) “That doesn’t work for me.”

4.) “What can you do for me?”

This is a good excuse to find a good doctor. 

A doctor’s note can provide confidence. I don’t recommend you show anyone your doctor’s note. There’s almost no time that it would actually be required. However, this policy is a great opportunity for you to find a doctor who will go to bat for you. The medical tyranny is not over. Your family may one day need an upstanding, brave doctor who rejects the brainwashing.

Be ready to reject the face mask. Allan Stevo’s bestselling “Face Masks in One Lessonprepares you for that, as does his writing and his newsletter of videos, classes, and activism opportunities at