So much for leading by example. Donald Trump announced that the CDC has recommended that Americans wear cloth masks to stop the spread of COVID, but says he won’t be doing it himself.
After dragging his heels about advising Americans to wear a cloth mask in public to help stem the spread of the COVID virus, President Donald Trump announced on Apr. 3 that the CDC is recommending Americans do so. But rather than urge citizens to take that advice and wear them in public, he stressed, “This is voluntary. I don’t think I am going to be doing it.” Although he did concede, “it may be good,” in stopping the spread of the virus, which has infected over 270K Americans and killed over 7,000 as of this date.
Trump seemed almost petulant when having to say during an Apr. 3 press conference that “In light of these studies, the CDC is advising the use of non-medical cloth masks or non-medical cloth faced covering as an additional voluntary public health measure. So it’s voluntary, you don’t have to do it. This is voluntary,” he stressed, hitting the word hard and stressed he wouldn’t be doing it.
“I don’t think I’m going to be doing it,” he said, adding: “Wearing a face mask as I greet presidents, prime ministers, dictators, kings, queens — I just don’t see it. Behind that great resolute desk…I don’t know. Somehow, I just don’t see that for myself. Maybe I’ll change my mind.”
For weeks Trump has insisted that Americans don’t need to wear simple cloth face masks to stop the spread of the coronavirus. At one point he even suggested that their use could cause the risk of infection to users. Ironically, the same day as his press briefing, his wife First Lady Melania Trump urged Americans to wear masks. She tweeted, “As the weekend approaches I ask that everyone take social distancing & wearing a mask/face covering seriously. #COVID19 is a virus that can spread to anyone – we can stop this together.”
WATCH: Calling CDC guidance on face masks "voluntary," President Trump says "I just don't see that for myself."
Trump: "Behind that great resolute desk … I don't know. Somehow, I just don't see that for myself. Maybe I'll change my mind." pic.twitter.com/3rPt4lJ9tM
— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) April 3, 2020
As the weekend approaches I ask that everyone take social distancing & wearing a mask/face covering seriously. #COVID19 is a virus that can spread to anyone – we can stop this together.
— Melania Trump (@FLOTUS) April 3, 2020
Well, at least Melania has some common sense! Already many Americans have been using them while out in public away from self isolation. Even local cities have made the recommendation that the CDC did today. On Apr. 1, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti strongly urged citizens of the city wear masks when out in public. He tweeted that, “Early data suggests many who are infected are not symptomatic, which is why we are recommending you use cloth face coverings plus physical distancing for essential activities. Do not use surgical and N95 masks, which are reserved for first responders and medical workers.”