As Florida experiences a massive spike of new cases in the ongoing pandemic, Governor Ron DeSantis has been trying to reassure his state that his administration has things under control.
To that end, DeSantis gave an update last Friday about the efforts to track the rise in new cases and figure out the ways and reasons Florida is being considered one of the hotspots for the disease.
The speech given was livestreamed over Twitter.
DeSantis has the unenviable task of trying to explain the recent spike in confirmed cases. The fact he was one of the last governors to issue a stay-at-home order, and one of the first to try to reopen surely didn’t help.
He tried to reassure people by explaining that the majority of confirmed cases is moving to younger people, who won't experience the symptoms of the disease. This is less of a comfort since asymptomatic people can still spread the disease.
The fact that testing has spread enough that it's not being limited to those experiencing symptoms is great. You can catch those who might have gone on to spread the disease.
But as he talks, it seems no one is willing to trust Gov. DeSantis.
This might be due to a controversial statement DeSantis made earlier in the week when he claimed that day laborers and other agriculture workers who are "overwhelmingly Hispanic" were the biggest cause of the spike in positive cases.
"Some of these guys go to work in a school bus, and they're are all just packed there like sardines, going across Palm Beach County or some of these other places, and there's just all these opportunities to have transmission."
If this were the case, it'd be important to report on. Understanding where the threat lies would allow people to tailor their response to reduce the rate of transmission.
It's too bad the experts don't agree with DeSantis' statement.
Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried countered the governor's claims stating farm workers left weeks ago after the recent harvest.
Public health experts and aid groups added to this, noting that non-agricultural areas are the ones seeing the new spike in cases.
So you have to wonder what DeSantis is even talking about.
DeSantis has been heavily criticized for his response to the ongoing pandemic. From needing to backpedal on his insistence to not close the beaches, to claiming Florida had all the testing it needed two months ago, DeSantis' response has been heavily scrutinized.
Probably the most infamous moment in this saga, was an article in the National Review a month ago asking,
"Where does Ron DeSantis go to get his apology?"
Considering Florida is a hotbed for the virus, and DeSantis' solution is to blame minorities, he probably won't be getting an apology from anyone any time soon.
Neither does anyone else online.
It might be time for a little self reflection if DeSantis wants to find the real reason for virus spikes in his state.