President-elect Joe Biden ‘s plea for Americans to wear masks for 100 days was met with anger and defiance from supporters of President Donald Trump , underscoring the challenge of fighting a politicized pandemic in a deeply divided nation.
As cases of COVID-19 surged past 14 million, Biden’s opponents flooded social media with posts that questioned the science behind the mask appeal and other government responses that have wrecked the economy and constrained civil liberties.
Most experts recommend mask wearing and social distancing among a number of effective ways to control the spread of the virus that by December 3, had infected 14,535,196 people in the United States and killed 282,829, the most anywhere in the world.
“The first day I’m inaugurated to say I’m going to ask the public for 100 days to mask,” Biden said in an interview broadcast Thursday on CNN. “Just 100 days to mask, not forever. One hundred days.”
“And I think we’ll see a significant reduction if we occur that, if that occurs with vaccinations and masking to drive down the numbers considerably,” Biden added.
Biden’s suggestion did not sit well with some conservatives who tweeted their disagreement with the 100-day long mask mandate.
“Joe Biden asks everyone in America to wear a mask for his first 100 days like most people haven’t been wearing them FOR THE PAST SIX MONTHS,” tweeted Daily Caller reporter Scott Morefield.
“Just more proof that face masks are a religious cult at this point,” Morefield added. “No amount of data will ever change the minds of these fanatics.”
“Biden says he will ask Americans to wear face masks during the first 100 days of his administration,” tweeted author and radio host Todd Starnes. “I’m not sure that’s enough to stifle the stench of his leftist, America-Last agenda.”
” WE WILL NOT COMPLY! ” tweeted Georgia Congresswoman-elect Majorie Taylor Greene.
“Where it started: ’15 days to slow the spread'” tweeted reporter for the conservative Blaze television network Elijah Schaffer. “How it’s going: ‘just 100 days to mask. Not forever'”.
“utterly pathetic: Biden wants mask-wearing for “first 100 days” – @CNN,” tweeted British political commentator Steve Hilton. “what “science” or “data” is 100 days based on? none it’s pure BS, plucked out of thin air by some PR idiot”
“everything Biden says about the virus is for politics, not public health,” Hilton added. “he has zero credibility”
Newsweek reached out to Biden’s transition team for comment.
President Donald Trump, who has often been seen without a face mask, has implied that Biden’s propensity for wearing face masks was unnecessary.
“I don’t wear masks like him,” Trump said during the first presidential debate in September. “Every time you see him, he’s got a mask. He could be speaking 200 feet away and he shows up with the biggest mask I’ve ever seen.”
Because of the current increase in positive COVID-19 cases, some states have declared plans to put more safety protocols in place. California Governor Gavin Newsom announced that the 5 regions of his state would be placed under a stay-at-home order for three weeks if bed availability in intensive care units within the regions fell below a 15 percent capacity. “This is the most challenging moment since the beginning of this pandemic,” Newsom said in a Thursday news conference.
In the state of Florida, where more than 1 million positive cases of COVID-19 have been reported, Governor Ron DeSantis has declined to enact a statewide mask mandate. “I’m opposed to mandates, period,” DeSantis said during a Monday briefing. “I don’t think they work.”
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