Conservative journalist wonders why coronavirus truthers never ‘blame Trump’ for anything: ‘Truly, it’s a mystery’
Many right-wing media outlets — from Fox News to white AM talk radio — have promoted a great deal of misinformation about the coronavirus pandemic, which radio host Rush Limbaugh infamously compared to “the common cold.” But not only all right-wing media outlets have downplayed the severity of coronavirus: The Bulwark has offered an abundance of quality reporting on the pandemic. And Bulwark journalist Jonathan V. Last, this week, slams some of the bizarre contradictions that have been coming from coronavirus truthers.
“I’ve been consistently boggled by the loose affiliation of coronavirus-truthers, America Firsters, Catholic rad-trads, and economic boosters who have come together over the last month to insist that: (1) COVID-19 isn’t so bad. (2) The real problem is the economy and the lunacy of shutting America down,” Last asserts in an article published on Thursday.
Coronavirus truthers, the conservative journalist adds, are demanding that the U.S. economy reopen and insist that social distancing is going too far.
“These people all seem to have different reasons for wanting America to ‘reopen,’” Last explains. “The only thing they have in common is that they all — from the Taliban Catholics to the alt-right trolls, from the conspiracy cranks to Peter Navarro — love them some Trump.”
Last adds, however, that coronavirus truthers overlook the fact that Trump himself supports social distancing for the rest of April — and that Dr. Anthony Fauci, who many of them hate, is part of Trump’s coronavirus task force.
“If you have seen someone from the #ReopenAmerica brigade blame Trump, please send me the clip,” Last writes. “Because as of now, I have literally never seen anyone from that part of the world blame Trump for America’s shutdown. How could that be? He’s the president!” Last adds, “If Anthony Fauci is the villain in all of this, and Trump hasn’t fired him by now, then Trump is at least a dupe and maybe an accomplice.”
Moreover, Last writes, the coronavirus truthers are giving Trump a pass for when it comes to social distancing.
“On March 16, Trump urged Americans to social distance for 15 days,” Last notes. “He later extended that timeline. If COVID-19 is really no big deal and if reopening America is the most important thing in the world, then why aren’t these people flaying Trump every minute of every day and exhorting him to stop this madness? Truly, it is a mystery.”
Last is among the conservative journalists who — like Jennifer Rubin and Max Boot at the Washington Post or Joe Scarborough at MSNBC — certainly cannot be accused of downplaying coronavirus’ severity. In a separate Bulwark article published on April 15, Last slammed the coronavirus truthers who ignorantly claim that it’s no worse than the flu.
Pointing to a scientific graph that compared flu and COVID-19 data, Last stressed that COVID-19 is not only deadlier — it is also easier to spread.
“Coronavirus is so much more dangerous to the American people than the flu that anyone who suggests equivalency is either deliberately lying, or does not know what they are talking about,” Last wrote.