Georgia Repblican Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene was criticized after she said that people should "laugh" at an ongoing monkeypox outbreak in the United States because it only affects "some people," referring to gay men, who have made up the majority of the country's existing cases, most of which have been found in New York City.
Greene made the remarks during an interview at this past weekend's Turning Point USA conference, which also featured appearances from Donald Trump Jr. and Matt Gaetz.
Asked by conservative journalist Allison Royal about the recent decision by the World Health Organization to declare monkeypox a public health emergency of international concern, Greene dismissed it as “a sexually transmitted disease” that is "not a threat to most of the population.”
Greene called monkeypox a "scam," employing a word she has often used to refer to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic that she has consistently downplayed despite the fact that the virus has killed over one million people in the United States alone.
You can hear what Greene said in the video below.
“Of course, monkeypox is a threat to some people in our population. But we know what causes it, and that’s pretty much, um… it’s basically a sexually transmitted disease."
"So it’s not a threat to most of the population.”
"And so it's not a global pandemic. It's really not."
"And people just have to laugh at it, mock it, and reject it. It’s another scam.”
Homosexuals have been scapegoated throughout history and blamed for disease outbreaks—such as the AIDS crisis—and are currently subject to the ongoing "groomer" hysteria among conservatives accusing LGBTQ+ people of building relationships, trust, and emotional connections with children so they can manipulate, exploit and abuse them.
The New York City Department of Health is currently opening more monkeypox vaccine sites in response to high demand as part of the larger effort to contain the outbreak. As of Monday, July 25, 1,040 people in New York City have tested positive for orthopoxvirus/monkeypox.
Greene is also incorrect to say that monkeypox is a sexually transmitted disease.
Last week, Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Dr. Demetre Daskalakis, director of the CDC’s Division of HIV Prevention, said that people who have contracted monkeypox did so after coming in “close contact” with lesions through touch, bodily fluids, clothes, and shared linens.
The World Health Organization has also refuted attempts to cast the monkeypox outbreak as a disease that only affects gay men, saying that gay and bisexual men are "the canary in the mine that’s alerting us to a new disease that could spread to other groups.”
Many condemned Greene after her remarks became public and accused her of homophobia.
Greene is one of the more vocally anti-LGBTQ+ members of Congress.
In March, she was criticized after she launched into an attack against Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and his husband Chasten, demanding they “stay out of our girls' bathrooms" and suggested that they are both sexual predators.
Greene also has a history of dehumanizing transgender people.
She made headlines last year after she raised the anti-trans flag outside her office, which happens to sit directly across from the office of Representative Marie Newman, an Illinois Democrat. Earlier, Newman had raised a trans flag to support her transgender daughter following a contentious debate about the Equality Act, which Greene opposed.
Greene's behavior drew bipartisan criticism, including from Republicans who'd earlier voted to strip her of her committee assignments after she made anti-Semitic remarks and promoted violence against Democrats.
She recently garnered significant criticism after she melted down after someone vandalized an anti-transgender sign she displays outside her office, referring to the culprits as "crazy and deranged."