President Trump's campaign will require temperature checks and will distribute face masks and hand sanitizer to each person attending his rally in Tulsa on Saturday, a spokesperson said Monday.
Why it matters: The decision to move ahead with the rally as the number of coronavirus infections continues to be on the rise in many states has prompted scrutiny from public health experts and local officials in Tulsa. It will be the first rally by any presidential candidate since the pandemic was declared in March.
Republican National Committee chair Ronna McDaniel said Monday that masks would be optional, telling Fox News: "The American people can make decisions for themselves, we're all pretty informed about Covid at this point."
Trump tweeted earlier Monday: "The Far Left Fake News Media, which had no Covid problem with the Rioters & Looters destroying Democrat run cities, is trying to Covid Shame us on our big Rallies. Won’t work!"
You've heard airport anti-terrorism measures described as "security theater"? Well, this is public health theater. Temperature checks seemed like a sensible anti-COVID measure a couple of months ago, but we've known for a while that a significant percentage of infected people don't develop a fever.
The hand sanitizer is a nice freebie, but the masks are being offered largely as a thumb in the eye of the president's enemies: Team Trump knows the audience won't wear them, and will make a great show of mocking the idea of wearing them, and that will be a great moment in lib ownage.
Ronna Romney McDaniel makes the point clear when she says, "The American people can make decisions for themselves, we're all pretty informed about Covid at this point." In other words: You know this all nonsense, right? We'll give you the silly masks just to shut the media up, but we all know that only wussy Democrats actually wear them.
It's going to be like this until there's a vaccine -- which many of the Trumpers won't want. I have no idea what the health toll of all this rejection of science will be, but it won't be pretty.
Posted with permission from No More Mr. Nice Blog