With the global pandemic resulting in thousands of deaths and millions of lost jobs in the United States, protests are erupting across the country urging local leaders to scale back stay at home orders, which have shown promise in slowing the spread of the virus.
These protesters—many of whom display support for President Donald Trump—have received widespread criticism for flouting these orders by assembling in large crowds with little to no protective gear, putting themselves and others at risk of infection.
One person, however, is supporting the dangerous assemblies: the President of the United States.
During the first round of protests, Trump tweeted to "LIBERATE" some states whose governors had issued measures to curb the virus. Additionally, he hailed the protesters as "great people," even as experts in his own administration warned that assemblies like these posed a threat.
Now, the former Chairman of the Republican National Committee (RNC), Michael Steele, called out the President in a recent MSNBC interview for enabling the protesters' reckless behavior.
Responding to the President's claims that the protesters are eager to get back to work, Steele said:
"Go to work and die? Go to work and get sick? What is the point of that? We're trying to get healthy, and if you weigh your job greater than you weigh your grandparents' lives or your children's lives or your own life, maybe that's your individual choice, but that's not something that I'm willing to take a risk with my life on."
Even before protests against safety measures broke out, the President expressed an eagerness for the economy to return to normal and for non-essential businesses to reopen. The economy is a crucial talking point of the Trump campaign in favor of his reelection, which seems to be Trump's motivation for bucking health experts' warnings and egging the protestors on.
Steele made similar remarks on Washington Post reporter Jonathan Capeheart's podcast—Cape Up—where he didn't hesitate to let sparks fly:
"America, in some respects, has been abused by this President. He doesn't give a damn about how you feel."
We have been the victims of severe political abuse since this nightmare of a faux potus came down the escalator. https://t.co/sK6BSATuwb— Sara Dillon (@Sara Dillon)1587478036.0
The past three years punctuated by the pandemic have exposed one of the flaws in our constitutional system: It is e… https://t.co/3yLlHzPhcZ— CommonSense (@CommonSense)1587476657.0
The individual currently in the @WhiteHouse is ill equipped to handle this crisis ... https://t.co/bcpvEKsKaz— Patricia A. McGowan (@Patricia A. McGowan)1587469365.0
Correction...being abused. The crisis is worsening under his lack of leadership and competence. https://t.co/i1gqZHqWMT— Joe Brazda (@Joe Brazda)1587479506.0
The President's support of the protesters is dangerous.
It’s hard to believe but Trump is calling on protestors to “liberate” states with restrictions & urging people to p… https://t.co/3SOESPMj9h— Dennis Atkins (@Dennis Atkins)1587158599.0
trump has now crossed over from delusional to dangerous. His ineptness has killed Americans. Now he is inciting h… https://t.co/FpZy41cWuE— American Veteran (@American Veteran)1587151011.0
President Trump appears to be egging on the idiotic protestors defying the stay-home-orders and putting lives at ri… https://t.co/IzKE6FgNtz— Ahmed Baba (@Ahmed Baba)1587137127.0
Then again, what else is new?
For a deeper look into Trump's ineptitude, check out A Very Stable Genius, available here.