On Thursday night, Seth Meyers dedicated the latest edition of his “A Closer Look” segment to President Trump’s and the conservative media’s war on mask-wearing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Conservatives have decided to turn [wearing masks] into yet another dumb culture-war issue. Some have even theorized that it’s a media conspiracy to keep people permanently afraid,” explained the Late Night comic.
Cut to Laura Ingraham, a Fox News host once accused by her college newspaper adviser of harboring “the most extreme antihomosexual views imaginable” and whose own brother has called her “a monster.” She indeed appeared to call wearing masks a liberal and media conspiracy.
“Rush Limbaugh made a great point, as he always does, on the radio the other day, and he said that the virus itself, as it weakens and states start reopening, the media that have been selling this panic, panic, panic for weeks and weeks and weeks, they have fewer images to sell their hysteria to justify continued lockdowns. But the masks, well, they’re kind of a constant reminder. You see the masks, and you think, you’re not safe, you’re not back to normal—not even close,” said Ingraham.
“OK, first of all, anytime someone says ‘Rush Limbaugh made a great point the other day,’ that’s your cue to exit the conversation. That’s usually the point on Thanksgiving where you excuse yourself, go to the bathroom, and take a hit off your vape pen… or frantically search the medicine cabinet for something that will get you high,” Meyers joked.
“The point is, mask-wearing isn’t some liberal media conspiracy,” he continued. “There’s evidence to suggest it works. Lots of other countries do it, and the vast majority of Americans agree with it.” Indeed, a new poll published Wednesday revealed that “Americans say, 62% to 29%, that deciding to wear a face mask is more a matter of public health than a matter of personal choice,” while “Americans say, 69% to 19%, that it’s a sign of respectfulness to wear a face mask when in public and near other people.” Meanwhile, another recent study concluded that “the coronavirus’ transmission rate via respiratory droplets or airborne particles dropped by as much as 75 percent when surgical masks were used.” But perhaps the best proof is Hong Kong, which instituted mask-wearing early on and has had a total of four deaths from COVID-19.
“And they’re right,” said Meyers. “It’s just common decency! If you know that coughing or breathing on someone could get you sick, you cover your mouth—unless you’re Trump.”