Hardy har har.
Increasing numbers of Floridians are dying of a newly invigorated virus, and Gov. Ron DeSantis wants to make puns of Anthony Fauci’s name.
Amid a resurgence of death and devastation, Marco Rubio wants to mock face coverings – again.
Chortle, chortle. Twitter titter.
Has anyone noticed that amid this pandemic, Republicans have become a party of trolls?
They can’t treat a deadly matter with straight faces. While others address a public health emergency, they huddle in the corner and squirt sounds from their armpits.
This especially is the case with some elected Republicans. They ran for office saying, “Government is the problem.” Then they set out to prove it with their own infantile irresponsibility.
Up until Jan. 6, that mode was solely modeled by the troll immortalized by a blimp labeled “Baby Trump.” Now we have little trolls in red state after state.
DeSantis sells “Don’t Fauci Florida” tee-shirts and says Florida won’t be a “Faucian dystopia.” Whatever that means, he can’t blame Fauci for 400-plus deaths a week of mostly unvaccinated and unprotected Floridians.
He can blame attitudes that ignore or outright mock health authorities.
DeSantis was respectful at the site of the Florida condo collapse that killed 97. What about the disaster that this week will kill four times that?
Rubio took time to exercise his Twitter fingers when Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin arrived in the Philippines double-covered against COVID – face mask, face shield.
Since Austin is vaccinated, Rubio called these precautions “embarrassing COVID theater.”
Ah, but the Philippines has mandated that people wear face shields along with masks in public places.
Austin and the Philippines are taking COVID seriously. Republicans like Rubio, not so.
Red states are where the virus is surging — the virus that is forcing governors and health officials into excruciating decisions. And red state Republicans are doing the mocking.
Unvaccinated Americans are causing this. People who aren’t taking proper precautions against the virus are causing this.
Leaders who pose as trolls are causing this.
We are supposed to give points to people like DeSantis – and, stunner, Sean Hannity – for finally saying, yes, vaccinations are a good thing to do.
It’s only a pause before the mocking resumes.
Congressman Clay Higgins should take COVID seriously. The Louisiana Republican has claimed he caught the virus twice. Yet he refuses to say whether he’s been vaccinated, and he refuses to promote vaccination. Indeed, he’s sponsoring a bill to prohibit companies from requiring vaccination of employees.
Meanwhile he refers to COVID as the “Chinese Communist Party biological attack weaponized virus.” Chortle, chortle.
And now for a COVID trolling flashback:
Last July Sen. Ted Cruz had this sterling prediction which, like so much else Republicans have done, dismissed the severity of a horrible disease:
If Biden were to win the presidency, he said, “I guarantee you the week after the election, suddenly all those Democratic governors, all those Democratic mayors will say everything’s magically better.”
The “cynical” Democrats’ interest, Cruz said, wasn’t containing the virus but acceding to their inner desires to “destroy people’s livelihoods, their lives.”
Look around, Ted, and tell me how that prediction stands up today.
How tragic it is that the political equations employed by Trump as president continue to infect a major party.
The party of Eisenhower would not have acted like a bunch of trolls amid a national health emergency like this. Neither would the party of Bush — either iteration.
But this is the party of Trump, and Fox News. People are dying because of it.
Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org.