Molly Wilcox, Salon

Biden announces CDC's new mask guidance. Will it stop the right-wing outrage cycle?

President Joe Biden announced on Tuesday the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated guidelines for activities that vaccinated people can now enjoy, including attending small outdoor gatherings without having to wear a mask, hours after Tucker Carlson instructed his Fox News audience to confront people wearing masks in public.

The amended guidelines come as more than nearly 29% of people in the U.S. have been fully vaccinated and more than 42% have received at least one dose. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky spoke during a briefing by the Biden administration. "Today is another day we can take a step back to the normalcy of before," she said. "Over the past year, we have spent a lot of time telling Americans what they cannot do, what they should not do. Today, I'm going to tell you some of the things you can do if you are fully vaccinated."

As the new guidelines state, fully vaccinated people can:

  • Visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing
  • Visit with unvaccinated people (including children) from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing
  • Participate in outdoor activities and recreation without a mask, except in certain crowded settings and venues
  • Resume domestic travel and refrain from testing before or after travel or self-quarantine after travel.
  • Refrain from testing before leaving the United States for international travel (unless required by the destination) and refrain from self-quarantine after arriving back in the United States.
  • Refrain from testing following a known exposure, if asymptomatic, with some exceptions for specific settings
  • Refrain from quarantine following a known exposure if asymptomatic
  • Refrain from routine screening testing if asymptomatic and feasible

The guidelines state that fully vaccinated people can attend outdoor events, like live music, sporting events, or parades, as long as they wear well-fitting masks.

Being that there are still roughly 50,000 new COVID-19 cases per day, Walensky urged fully vaccinated people to continue to wear masks while indoors to prevent the spread. She said fully vaccinated individuals should wear masks in public spaces, when gathering indoors with unvaccinated people, when with unvaccinated high-risk individuals, or in an outdoor setting where masks are required.

"Generally, for vaccinated people, outdoor activities without a mask are safe. However, we continue to recommend masking in crowded outdoor settings and venues, such as packed stadiums and concerts where there is decreased ability to maintain physical distance and where many unvaccinated people may also be present," Walensky said. "We will continue to recommend this until widespread vaccination is achieved."

President Joe Biden continues to wear a mask inside in order to send a message to stay vigilant while indoors. Meanwhile, Fox News remains hostile to the personal protective equipment, with the network's top-rated host telling his viewers on Monday night to "call the police immediately" and "contact child protective services" if they come in contact with a child wearing a mask.

LeVar Burton schools Meghan McCain on 'The View': It's 'consequence culture' — not cancel culture

LeVar Burton, the legendary children's television host from "Reading Rainbow" joined the co-hosts of "The View" on Monday and epically pushed back against Meghan McCain's argument that so-called cancel culture is bad for society.

McCain inserted Dr. Seuss into the conversation for the umpteenth time this year and asked Burton about whether the Dr. Seuss Foundation's decision to cease publication of certain books due to racially insensitive material was necessary.

"What do you think of that decision and about the cancel-culture surrounding works of art or artists that are controversial?" McCain asked.

Burton responded by first acknowledging the good parts of Seuss: "Dr. Seuss is more than a company that decided to put a couple of books on the shelf," he started. "That man, Theodor Geisel, is responsible for generations of wholesome, healthy, wonderful and imaginative, creative content for children of all ages," he continued. "And so, I think we need to put things in perspective."

Burton said that he thinks the term "cancel-culture" is misnamed. "I think we have a consequence culture. And that consequences are finally encompassing everybody in the society, whereas they haven't been ever in this country."

He argued that cancel culture is actually good because it helps hold people accountable, which helps shift and progress culture forward.

"And I think it has everything to do with a new awareness by people who were simply unaware of the real nature of life in this country for people who have been othered since this nation began," he told McCain.

Watch the clip below:


LeVar Burton schools Meghan McCain on 'cancel culture' www.youtube.com

Daily Show's Jordan Klepper goes deep into the MAGAverse — and finds frightening new Trump obsession

Jordan Klepper from the "Daily Show" has embarked on a years-long mission to understand the MAGA world of Donald Trump's most fervent supporters. In a new 35-minute segment, Klepper takes viewers deep into the trenches of the MAGAverse and uncovers the MAGA psyche that led to the Jan. 6 insurrection. Klepper has described himself on the day of the Capitol insurrection as someone who "just wanted to find some laughs," but found himself in the midst of a rage-filled rally that quickly turned south.

Klepper interviewed a man who described Donald Trump as "our first rock star, superhero president." Another woman, wearing a confederate flag shirt, said, "he's just a peaceful person in general, I think." Many of the supporters admit that he's "rough around the edges," they "don't like how he talks," and "yeah, he's an ass sometimes." But that's all part of his allure, they argued.

Klepper noted that there isn't much that could deter a Trump rally: not bad weather, an impeachment trial, or even a global pandemic called COVID-19. In regards to masks, some said "we're lions not sheep," therefore they won't follow the mask mandate that they argue infringes on their rights.

Some of the conversations went as follows:

"Read the transcript," a MAGA supporter said of the impeachment trial.

"Did you read the transcript?" asked Klepper.

"I didn't have to," he replied.

"But it's important that everyone read the transcript?"

"Yes absolutely."

"But to be clear, you have not read the transcript," Klepper pressed.

"I haven't, no… Don't be a sheep, think for yourself."

"But to be clear, you haven't read it, you just trusted someone else to have read it," Klepper confirms.

"Yes," replied the MAGA supporter.

A few women expressed their distrust of the media, including Fox News, but not including Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity. A different man described his distrust for the media, but his trust in Donald Trump, Jesus, and Tucker Carlson.

Klepper reinforced that Donald Trump is a brand above anything else, with his face found on flags, shirts, pants, and hats, and his name printed on hot pink, black, red, blue, and tie dye articles of clothing.

The segment concludes with an interview with Edward Young, a fervent Trump supporter who went to more than 50 Trump rallies over the past four years. Young, sporting new fang implants on his canine teeth and a Barron 2052 pin, talked about the comradery and community he found with the MAGAverse, fondly reminiscing on the fun they had.

Klepper interjected that the last Trump rally, the insurrection, was not exactly a lot of fun. Young argued that he had heard reports that one of the rioters who broke into the capitol was an integral member of Antifa. "Some of them are being unfairly persecuted," said Young of the rioters, after Klepper mentioned they tried to kill Nancy Pelosi.

n conclusion, Klepper and Young find a solitary shred of common ground. Young argued that Trump is their William Wallace, and Klepper countered that he wouldn't give him Wallace, but "he's a lot like Mel Gibson." Young couldn't help but agree.

Watch Klepper's adventures below:


Jordan Klepper Fingers The Pulse - Into The MAGAverse: Full Special | The Daily Show www.youtube.com

MSNBC guest calls out Morning Joe's for twisting the facts about immigration

MSNBC's "Morning Joe" was recently called to task by a guest who claimed the hosts pushed a number of inaccuracies when discussing President Joe Biden's border policy.

"There were a lot of inaccuracies in a Morning Joe segment that just ended," Atlantic reporter Caitlin Dickerson tweeted soon after appearing on the show Tuesday. "I only got a chance to respond to some of them and wanted to provide further clarity."

On the segment, host Joe Scarborough and Dickerson discussed the current influx of migrants crossing the border that's been causing an immigration crisis. Scarborough insinuated that immigration during the Biden Administration has seen the most migrants crossing the border, accusing them of not doing enough.

Dickerson clarified, however, that American asylum laws allow unaccompanied minors to cross the border, which was already in place before Joe Biden's presidency. She also said that the Biden administration is restoring case management programs that were eliminated by the Trump administration, which means court appearances have increased.

"The general implication was that requesting asylum is unfair or illegal. It's not," she said.

Later in the conversation, Scarborough falsely stated that the Biden administration is "sending a message across Central America if you're an unaccompanied minor and make that really dangerous trek, we're going to let you in."

"The facts are that Joe Biden has really botched this up," said Scarborough. "His administration has botched this up."

Scarborough referred to reports that some migrants weren't given instructions about when to appear for an immigration hearing.

"Even when illegal immigrants get a notice to appear, often, maybe 25, maybe 25%, maybe a third of those given those notice to appear actually come back and show up in court. This is sending a message that I fear is going to just lead to more chaos at the border."

On Twitter, Dickerson used the platform to explain herself and the policy fully.

"It is a not a 'Biden administration policy' that allows unaccompanied minors to request legal protection at the border," she Tweeted. "That is the American asylum system, codified into law by congress in the the Refugee Act of 1980," she continued.

Tucker Carlson is completely losing it in a spiral of misogynistic rants

Tucker Carlson is celebrating this Women's History Month by going off on one misogynistic rant after another. It should come as little surprise that as Congress was on the cusp of passing the largest economic stimulus in modern history, Carlson was busy attacking women from the House of Representatives to Hollywood to the military to the New York Times — but it's surely been a bizarre spiral to watch. Within the last two weeks, Carlson has called pregnant soldiers "a mockery," mocked Democratic Rep. Deb Haaland's Native American ancestry, dragged Meghan Markle through the mud, and antagonized New York Times reporter Taylor Lorenz as being a "deeply unhappy narcissist."

The Fox News host dedicated a portion of his show Tuesday evening to obsessing over Markle — all while claiming to not care at all about the drama surrounding the royal family. Carlson started a segment speaking about Sunday's Oprah interview during which the former Duchess discussed the lack of mental health resources within the institution, her suicidal thoughts, and racist questions about the color of her son's skin from within the royal family.

"Meghan Markle is a narcissist," Carlson said of the interview. After the resignation of U.K. TV host Piers Morgan, also known for baselessly slandering Markle repeatedly, Carlson complained: "You're not allowed to make fun of this, and you're definitely not allowed to mock the oppressed duchess. Our friend Piers Morgan just did that on television in the U.K., and had to resign from his job."

Carlson then went on to berate New York Times reporter Taylor Lorenz, who has recently spoken out about her experience facing online harassment. He launched into a 9-minute rant about "self-identified victimhood," calling Lorenz a narcissist for standing up for herself. He belittled Lorenz, who he called "far younger than prominent New York Times reporters used to be," before adding, "she's also much less talented" but "at the top of journalism's repulsive food chain."

Although criticizing female reporters is nothing out of the ordinary for Carlson, Lorenz said his rhetoric has given rise to multitudes of new online abuse coming her way.

"I hope people see this and recognize if for what it is," Lorenz tweeted, "an attempt to mobilize an army of followers to memorize my name and instigate harassment." On International Women's Day, she tweeted a plea to consider "supporting women enduring online harassment." Mentioning that it's "not an exaggeration to say that the harassment and smear campaign I've had to endure over the past year has destroyed my life."

Carlson is also now facing backlash for another attack he directed at women — this time those in the military.

"So we've got new hairstyles and maternity flight suits," Carlson complained on his show earlier this week."Pregnant women are going to fight our wars. It's a mockery of the U.S. Military. While China's military becomes more masculine as it's assembled the world's largest navy, our military needs to become as Joe Biden says more feminine, whatever feminine means anymore since men and women no longer exist. The bottom line is it's out of control, and the Pentagon is going along with this."

"The Secretary certainly shares the revulsion of so many others to what Mr. Carlson said," Pentagon spokesperson John Kirby said U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin on Thursday.

"Thousands of women serve honorably every day around the globe," said General Paul E. Funk III. "They are beacons of freedom and they prove Carlson wrong through determination and dedication. We are fortunate they serve with us."

And earlier this week, Carlson attacked Democratic Rep. Deb Haaland of New Mexico, who will be the very first Cabinet Secretary of indigenous descent.

"It seems a little weird to be 'excited' about an accident of birth," Carlson said, adding that celebrating her ethnicity and historical context played into "immoral" identity politics.

'Republicans brought this on themselves': Whoopi Goldberg shuts down Meghan McCain on GOP extremism

On Tuesday's episode of ABC's "The View," co-host Meghan McCain objected to the reaction following Donald Trump's second impeachment acquittal, leaving co-host Whoopi Goldberg so dismayed that she schooled McCain about the roots of radicalism in the Republican Party.

McCain argued that if Republicans are the party of "QAnon" then Democrats are the party of "socialism and late-term abortion."

"I believe that abortion is murder, I believe that life begins at conception," she said, clunkily inserting abortion into the conversation. McCain said that, according to the media, the only way to become a good Republican is to become a Democrat. "I don't know what to do anymore, because I can't keep coming on TV everyday saying that we're all Nazis and you know, Hitler salutes and whatever. It's just not intellectually honest."

McCain highlighted that Trump's approval rating among Republicans is still around 80%, implying that the Republican Party is simply increasingly conservative.

Goldberg couldn't let McCain's declarations go unanswered, however.

"You should be a little uncomfortable," she started. "You're thought of this way because of what you've shown everybody."

Goldberg passionately insisted that the Republican Party has brought this on themselves, alluding to the fact that Trump emboldened white supremacists and racist behavior for the last five years.

"Let's talk a little bit about women and having babies," she added. "Everyone has the right to make the decision they have to make for their life, okay? The bottom line is, whatever you decide to do as a woman with your body, that should be between you and your doctor. And sometimes poor women may need help."

"The Republicans, you showed your faces, you said you were okay with everything that happened, all the things that we've been taught as Americans that are not okay. You said it's ok and you've opened up the door for people to continue to act poorly."


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