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Anti-Science Republicans Like Jim Jordan Have Blood on Their Hands

The attitude of people like Jordan is why we are heading for 600,000 dead in the pandemic.

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) attends a House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis hearing on April 15, 2021 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. The committee is hearing testimony on the Biden administration's ongoing efforts to combat COVID-19. (Photo: Amr Alfiky-Pool/Getty Images)

Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) attends a House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis hearing on April 15, 2021 on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. The committee is hearing testimony on the Biden administration's ongoing efforts to combat COVID-19. (Photo: Amr Alfiky-Pool/Getty Images)

Ohio Republican congressman Jim Jordan chomped on to Dr. Anthony Fauci on Thursday like a rabid dog and spewed foam and spittle while prattling on about people being deprived of "liberty" during the pandemic.

He also managed to show complete disrespect to the chairman of the session, Rep. Jim Clyburn, shouting at him that he isn't a scientist. I wonder what it is about Rep. Clyburn that provoked Jordan's discourtesy? What could it possibly be?

Jordan means by "liberty" that bar owners should have been allowed to stay open with indoor service and packed crowds during the pandemic. He means that the property of a sliver of private businessmen should have taken precedence over the health of 330 million Americans.

Imagine that people like Jordan were running the United States this time last year, in the proud tradition of Captain Edward Smith of the Titanic.

The attitude of people like Jordan is why we are heading for 600,000 dead in the pandemic. Jordan has blood on his hands, inasmuch as there are Ohioans who listen to his advice. The horror—imagine that people like Jordan were running the United States this time last year, in the proud tradition of Captain Edward Smith of the Titanic.

The headline last June was "Jordan explodes when asked to put on mask" during a Congressional hearing. I mean, that is just rude. he was breathing on people and speaking heatedly, which means he was spraying them. He was also setting a bad—and deadly—example for his constituents. It was attitudes like that which ensured that his comrade in arms Louis Gohmert and his Fuhr– I mean, leader, the odious Trump, came down with COVID.

Watch:

A little after Jordan's very unwelcoming unveiling of his puss, 154 people were sickened from Covid by visiting one bar in East Lansing, MI. Dr. Fauci observed at a hearing, "Bars: really not good, really not good. Congregation at a bar, inside, is bad news. We really have got to stop that." Most bars are not designed in such a way that people can keep their distance, and many don't have good ventilation. Now that the nice weather is coming (if you consider a high of 58 degrees F. to be nice weather) in the upper midwest, maybe outdoor dining wouldn't be so dangerous. But Fauci is still right about being packed together indoors.

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That Fauci is still right is why Jordan was attacking him. Jordan doesn't care about people, just about the businesses that fund his campaigns.

My state, Michigan, is in the midst of another Covid wave, which was kicked off in February when Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, under severe pressure from Republicans and owners of bars and restaurants, allowed the latter to open up. Michigan is now averaging nearly 7,000 new cases a day and nearly 50 deaths a day. It is thought that the state has been stricken in this way not only because of premature opening but also because it has become an epicenter of the UK Covid variant, which is considerably more transmissible than the original virus. The variants arise when a lot of people get Covid from acting like Jim Jordan, so human beings become petrie dishes for the evolution of a more efficient and deadly virus. Resisting mitigation measures makes things worse all around.

A new comparative study of states with mask-wearing mandates (of a sort Jim Jordan opposes) versus states with no such mandates shows once again that the virus doesn't care what Jim Jordan thinks:

    "Fourteen of the 15 states with no mask wearing policy for the general public through September reported a high COVID-19 rate. Of the 8 states with at least 75% mask adherence, none reported a high COVID-19 rate. States with the lowest levels of mask adherence were most likely to have high COVID-19 rates in the subsequent month, independent of mask policy or demographic factors. Mean COVID-19 rates for states with at least 75% mask adherence in the preceding month was 109.26 per 100,000 compared to 249.99 per 100,000 for those with less adherence. Our analysis suggests high adherence to mask wearing could be a key factor in reducing the spread of COVID-19."

The authors add, "Eight states were reported to have at least 75% mask adherence in any month between June and September (AZ, CT, HI, MA, NY, RI, VT, VA); none reported a high COVID-19 rate in the subsequent month."

It is nice to see the study confirm what anyone with the sense God gave them already knew. Hong Kong, where almost everyone masked up, had almost no Covid problem. Whenever I say this, someone replies, but we're a democracy. Well, so are Virginia and Massachusetts, and they also got their covid numbers lower by getting 75% of the population to wear masks and socially distance.

The United States under Joe Biden is finally making enormous strides toward getting people vaccinated. Some 3 or 4 million people a day are now being vaccinated, since Biden called out the military to help give the shots and actually, like, organized the federal government response. He seems likely to get the job of getting to herd immunity done by July 4.

With regard Jordan's question to Dr. Fauci about when Jordan can get his "liberty" back, that's easy. When he and his death cult start acting like responsible adults and help get the country to 70% or 80% immune to the virus.

As for the date, well, Jordan should tell us.

Juan Cole

Juan Cole

Juan Cole teaches Middle Eastern and South Asian history at the University of Michigan. His newest book, "Muhammad: Prophet of Peace Amid the Clash of Empires" was published in 2020. He is also the author of  "The New Arabs: How the Millennial Generation Is Changing the Middle East" (2015) and "Napoleon's Egypt: Invading the Middle East" (2008).  He has appeared widely on television, radio, and on op-ed pages as a commentator on Middle East affairs, and has a regular column at Salon.com. He has written, edited, or translated 14 books and has authored 60 journal articles. 

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