Kicking social distancing measures to the curb, these protesters yell slogans against state lockdown orders and complain about missing their hairdressers.
For America, the initial days of the pandemic were marked by President Trump downplaying the impact of the crisis and attempting to write it off as nothing more than a Democratic hoax. Although he later went on to change his stance, the seed sown in those first few weeks had already taken root in conservative hearts. These dangerous ideas were then carefully nurtured and encouraged by right-leaning media propagating a constant stream of lies, bringing us to a point where an 'anti-lockdown' movement took to the streets. Kicking social distancing measures to the curb, they yell slogans against state lockdown orders and complain about missing their hairdressers.
It's noteworthy that she isn't protesting for the right to go back to work; she is protesting to force *others* to go back to work FOR HER. Her convenience, no less! These people are okay with others dying for their haircuts. https://t.co/fGMWCEONBV— Ana Mardoll (@AnaMardoll) April 19, 2020
Meanwhile, the self-described "wartime president" defended these protesters despite the growing death toll in the country. Speaking to reporters last week, Trump said he thought the protesters had been treated "rough" and that they are simply "people expressing their views. They seem to be very responsible people to me." The President's apparent lack of concern for the consequences of lifting stay-at-home orders coupled with these protests already seems to be working in some places as states like Georgia prepare to reopen certain businesses this week.
I do not think it means what you think it means. pic.twitter.com/oASjHzoKsS— ilyseh (@ilyseh) April 19, 2020
While we will undoubtedly see the consequences of this move in the days to come, for now, anti-lockdown protesters only have ears for what their President and pastors have to tell them. An interview by ITV News in Pennsylvania earlier this week summed up these protests in a few words and it speaks volumes. "My biggest fear right now is how quick American patriots crumbled and hid in their homes because their government told them that they should," she said. "We can’t hide in our homes and not produce for our families and for future generations because of a virus that may kill us."
"So what do I say to the science? I say I don’t believe your science because I believe my God," she added.
So, according to these children of God, the scientists slaving away to find a vaccine for the novel Coronavirus, the healthcare workers fighting a losing battle to keep the infected alive, the rising pile of dead bodies, the worrying number of essential workers who've lost their lives... they're all lies. One protestor even called scientists fearmongers. "I see it like the flu. That's exactly what it is, a different type of flu," the unmasked man said. Speaking of the experts urging people to follow social distancing protocol and wear masks, he said: "They're fearmongers because they don't know."
Something tells me his name will be in the paper again in about 3 weeks 💀— Colleen Sloan (@sloan_colleen) April 22, 2020
Hmmm... so according to this gentleman here, scientists who've devoted their lives to the pursuit of knowledge "don't know" the truth about this pandemic but somehow these protesters do. Does that sound right to you?
It is incredibly worrying that people still don't believe this virus is no ordinary flu. Some believe these anti-lockdown protests and attempts to reopen states before it's safe to do so are an attempt to force workers to choose to stay home for themselves. If staying at home—and choosing to stay alive and healthy—is a decision that comes from an individual and not the government, they wouldn't be eligible for unemployment benefits. So essentially, they'll be stuck between a rock and a hard place.
Once the workers at these establishments make the decision that it’s unsafe and refuse to work, they become ineligible for unemployment benefits. We haven’t even peaked here in Georgia yet. And they are opening the main venues of spread. Unfuckinbelievable— Ethan Embry (@EmbryEthan) April 20, 2020
This just shows that @GovKemp and @realDonaldTrump would rather endanger the lives of their constituents than give them the help they need during this crisis. Right now, these workers have the choice of; come into direct contact with an infected public, or starve in the streets— DangerPlaysVR (@DangerPlaysVR) April 22, 2020