Misinformation regarding the global pandemic seems to be spreading nearly as fast as the virus itself.
In Okeechobee County, Florida, Commissioner Bryant Culpepper, an elected politician, claimed during a meeting that the ailment could be cured by using a blow dryer to shoot hot air up one's nose.
Though the idea sounds too insane to be believed, Culpepper's claim was captured on video.
In the meeting, Culpepper claimed to have heard of the miracle cure on TV from "one of the foremost doctors who has studied the [virus]."
After citing his own medical experience as a paramedic, Culpepper said:
"This sounds really goofy — and it did to me too — but it works. The answer was you use a blow dryer. You hold a blow dryer up to your face and you inhale with your nose and it kills all the viruses in your nose."
He then added:
"Sometimes the cures for some of these diseases are very simple."
@TheTNHoller @OANN What’s even more frightening is that some people believe him.— ConnieSemeniuk (@ConnieSemeniuk) 1584892943.0
@TheTNHoller @OANN https://t.co/A8rhbA8ygO https://t.co/09wKP3baLD— @GOP is the worst. 💙 (@@GOP is the worst. 💙) 1584894251.0
Culpepper's claim is, of course, untrue. Most people in the meeting seemed to realize this, as his pronouncement was met with a prolonged silence and awkward "ok." One of his colleagues immediately followed up by warning the meeting about "misinformation."
Two points: 1. OANN is NOT a reliable source of news. 2. Citizens of Okeechobee County should insist Bryant Culp… https://t.co/ic2YP6dgEj— Motea (@Motea) 1584903733.0
People were especially critical of Culpepper online, with many people shaming him for spreading unhelpful advice from his position of power.
Thank you Mr. Culpepper! Just use some common sense people! It’s basic science. Anything that is heated to 136 degr… https://t.co/2HTt1Cn52E— Preston Whittaker (@Preston Whittaker) 1585024840.0
“Commissioner Culpepper said the OAN cable television program ‘is the new Fox News if you want to know the truth,’… https://t.co/u1ChFyAQxf— Katie S. Phang (@Katie S. Phang) 1584889037.0
@MarcACaputo actually makes it worse by drying out mucus membranes [and aerosolizing the virus if you got it]— Greg Dworkin (@Greg Dworkin) 1584888769.0
Commissioner Culpepper initially doubled down, telling his detractors yesterday, "No one is holding a gun to your h… https://t.co/6PKaA5aMGU— Billy Corben (@Billy Corben) 1584932296.0
After entering into several online conflicts with his critics, Culpepper wrote an apology on Facebook promising he would no longer advertise any cures that hadn't been scientifically proven.
Fortunately, even if Culpepper didn't manage to learn about carefully spreading only reliable facts, this entire ordeal has taught him something else perhaps just as important: sticking a blow dryer up your nose helps nobody.