Health Officials Bizarrely Claim Risk of Spreading Coronavirus During a Protest is Acceptable as Long as the Protests are Anti-White-Supremacy

Politics U.S.

More than 1,200 public health professionals, infectious diseases professionals, and community stakeholders have signed on to a letter claiming that somehow the coronavirus spreading among Black Lives Matter protesters is less of a public health risk than the coronavirus spreading among white protesters who were demanding the lockdowns be lifted.

The officials write:

A public health response to these [Black Lives Matter] demonstrations is also warranted, but this message must be wholly different from the response to white protesters resisting stay-home orders.

They fan the flames of division by asserting the virus is caused by racism.

COVID-19 among Black patients is yet another lethal manifestation of white supremacy.

They seemingly go on to point out their hypocrisy by stating that while the Black Lives Matter protests do represent a risk of spreading Covid19 among its participants, the need for protests against racism and, specifically white people, outweighs that risk.

Staying at home, social distancing, and public masking are effective at minimizing the spread of COVID-19. To the extent possible, we support the application of these public health best practices during demonstrations that call attention to the pervasive lethal force of white supremacy. However, as public health advocates, we do not condemn these gatherings as risky for COVID-19 transmission. We support them as vital to the national public health and to the threatened health specifically of Black people in the United States.

However, they demand this flexibility apply only to protests that are organized by one race against another (specifically black against white).

This should not be confused with a permissive stance on all gatherings, particularly protests against stay-home orders. Those actions not only oppose public health interventions, but are also rooted in white nationalism and run contrary to respect for Black lives. Protests against systemic racism, which fosters the disproportionate burden of COVID-19 on Black communities and also perpetuates police violence, must be supported [Emphasis in original].

The double standard seems to point alternative agendas for both the Covid19 nationwide lockdowns and the Black Lives Matter Protests.

Photo by Ted Eytan via Flickr

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