GOPers Now Taking COVID Seriously Following Trump's Diag— Ahhh, Who Are We Kidding?
This week, people who are much less cynical than I am are very likely thinking to themselves "You know, I bet this is really going to change things. People on the Right are going to start taking COVID-19 more seriously and we'll be able to knock this thing out, or maybe they'll even see that Trump was very stupid about coronavirus and not vote for him this time around! But in the meantime, it sure does seem like his tone is softening! Perhaps he is becoming presidential At last!!"
By "less cynical" I mean "more likely to be wrong about things." Obviously.
Because on Friday evening, well after everyone knew about Trump's diagnosis, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis claimed that people who supported closing schools to slow the spread of coronavirus were like "flat earthers."
Via Click Orlando:
"In March we may not have had all the information, but in hindsight, knowing what we know now, the closure of schools was one of the biggest public health mistakes in modern American history," DeSantis said. "And I think even Europe has said we shouldn't have closed up."
In the interview with the conservative talk-show host, DeSantis said that as the virus surged in Florida in July, he fought against people who didn't want to reopen schools because he expected the outbreak to abate and because children "are not vectors" for spreading the coronavirus.
"So, now we're at the point where the people who advocate school closures are really the flat earthers of our day," DeSantis said. "They're not doing it based on data. They're not doing it based on evidence. They're doing it based on either politics or emotion. And so, the harm of school closures, I think, is really considerable."
Pretty sure that they are, in fact, doing it based on evidence, rather than politics or emotion. In fact, it is just a little bit possible that DeSantis is projecting here.
There's more irony in that take than you might think. Part of the reason why flat earthers think the earth is flat is because they can't "feel" that it's round. That when they look out at the ocean, they don't see "the curve." They also feel that it bolsters their belief in God for reasons I'm not actually totally clear on. According to this guy, the reason we tell people that space exists and the earth is round is that we want them to think they're not God's special creations?
Space is Fake! - Flat Earth Man Exposes Space Fraud! youtu.be
It is a weirdly catchy song, honestly.
But I digress.
It takes an incredible amount of chutzpah to go "Yeah, we definitely should have done less to prevent transmission of this virus that has killed 200,000 people in the country and 14,640 people in Florida alone — 111 of them just yesterday," but DeSantis is willing to go there.
His theory will surely come as a surprise to the families of teachers who have already died this year from COVID-19. Also all of the other families of people who have died from COVID-19! And people who have contracted COVID-19 from children, who absolutely can pass the virus on, to each other and also to adults. Because it's not as if a virus is going to go "Oh, I'm in an 8 year olds nose! Better stay here and not get anyone else sick!"
Bill Barr, for his part has announced that he will not be quarantining after attending the Rose Garden Massacre and interacting with Kellyanne Conway, who has since tested positive for the virus.
Asked Saturday why Barr isn't quarantining after news of Conway's positive Covid results, the Justice Department reiterated to CNN that Barr had tested negative on Friday. Justice Department spokeswoman Kerri Kupec later said Barr had again tested negative.
The attorney general was seen leaving the White House on Saturday wearing a mask. He had gone there on Friday and Saturday to get Covid tests -- both of which were negative.Barr will continue to self monitor and get tested, according to the Justice Department.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends a person stay at home for 14 days if they may have been exposed to Covid-19 to prevent spread of the virus.
Trump's regular supporters haven't started taking it too seriously either. Or maybe they don't know what they're supposed to do or think just yet, because he hasn't told them.
Via The Guardian:
Sean Patterson is not worried that Donald Trump has been hospitalized with coronavirus because he believes what the president tells him.
"It's a hoax. There's no pandemic. As Trump said, how many millions die of flu?" said the 56-year-old truck driver outside the early voting station in St Joseph, Missouri – a stronghold for the president.
But then Patterson pauses and contemplates the possibility that Trump really does have Covid-19.
"If he's sick, then they planted it when they tested him. It's what they did to me when I went to hospital for my heart beating too fast. Two weeks later I got a cold," he said. "It's political. I don't trust the US government at all. Who are they to mandate personal safety? I listen to Trump."
And sure, that'll probably work out for them just fine. Until it doesn't.
Anyway! I am now out for the day and this is your open thread! Bye!!!!
Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. In addition to her work at Wonkette, she also has a biweekly column at Dame. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse