In his on-again, off-again position on wearing face masks to protect against coronavirus infection, Tucker Carlson is off again.
On his nightly political talk show on Fox News channel, Carlson discussed President Trump’s demands that schools reopen this fall.
“Many schools that do plan to reopen will do so under a series of restrictions that have no basis of any kind in science. It’s kind of a bizarre health theater. Students will be kept six feet apart, everyone will have to wear a mask, class sizes will be limited,” he said.
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The comment, suggesting that social distancing and wearing face masks are not scientifically shown to reduce the spread of coronavirus, is wrong. The "series of restrictions" follow guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which has been endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics and other certified public health experts.
And Carlson himself seemed to contradict his earlier position that wearing face masks do work to protect against COVID-19. In late March, he criticized the hoarding of masks but also the CDC’s guidelines discouraging Americans from buying medical masks, which the agency has since admitted were issued in order to maintain a supply for health professionals.
"Of course, masks work," Carlson said at the time. "Everyone knows that. Dozens of research papers have proved it. In South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, the rest of Asia — where coronavirus has been kept under control — masks were key."
But wearing face masks have since been politicized, as President Trump continues to resist wearing one despite issuing his own support for the preventative measure. When the Democratic mayor of Los Angeles, Eric Garcetti, ordered residents to wear masks in public, Carlson turned against them, saying, “It goes without saying there is no science to back up this order or any of Garcetti’s so-called health decisions. In fact, it’s possible that requiring masks outside will not prevent a single person from being infected in Los Angeles," according to the Daily Beast.
Regardless of Carlson’s support, public health experts continue to advise people to wear face masks as the coronavirus pandemic rages on. Research shows that the masks are effective in preventing the transmission of COVID-19, an airborne disease that has been shown to infect most commonly through the nose.
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