Fox News personality Tomi Lahren has spent much of the pandemic decrying the need to wear masks and practice social distancing, likening such actions to those of a draconian state. Her latest remarks, urging her followers to “free the face,” are a further indication of how much wearing masks has turned into a flashpoint in the culture wars.
“We will no longer be listening to you,” said Lahren of Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top expert on infectious diseases. “In fact, some of us never have!! Free the face!!”
We will no longer be listening to you. In fact, some of us never have!! Free the face!! https://t.co/1147cUgedX
— Tomi Lahren (@TomiLahren) May 10, 2021
Lahren’s remarks were in response to comments Fauci made last night on “Meet the Press,” during which he observed that some people may decide to wear face masks during certain seasons to help avoid spreading other respiratory illnesses like the flu.
“We’ve had practically a nonexistent flu season this year merely because people were doing the kinds of public health things that were directed predominantly against covid-19,” Fauci said.
Fauci’s comments did not, as a New York Post headline Lahren shared appeared to imply, that face masks would become mandatory during certain seasons such as the wintertime when flu viruses are at their peak.
Lahren was immediately criticized.
How is it that the rest of the world understands mask wearing but conservatives politicize it into some far fetched conspiracy theory?
It’s pathetic. Wear the mask. Get the vaccine. When enough people have the vaccine, nobody will have to wear a mask. So fucking simple.
— _left_is_right, B.B.A. (@left_is_right__) May 10, 2021
You don’t listen to scientists?
— I.A. Noah (@jst_brown) May 10, 2021
Yeah, we know you never listened to him or the CDC. This is why we're still having to deal with #Covid_19 over a year after it started.
— JayOnPolitics (@PoliticalJay2) May 10, 2021
People like you invite others Into demise. You’re one of the ppl responsible for keeping this pandemic going
— TONY ARTPOP (@13Who_Gaga) May 10, 2021
Shortly afterward, Lahren repeated a baseless conspiracy theory that “coronavirus was exploited and weaponized by the Democrats to push a control agenda.”