With nearly 60,000 Americans dead of the virus that's caused a national health crisis in the United States, health experts and scientists are scrambling to find the most effective treatment and even a cure so that the United States can proceed to some version of normal.
Despite scientists' best efforts, there's still much of the virus that's left unknown.
Some have preyed on that lack of knowledge, claiming to have cures or vaccines for the virus that have eluded health experts. These "cures" are touted by the likes of conspiracy theorist like Alex Jones and televangelist Jim Bakker.
So rampant are the promotions of fake cures that the Justice Department recently cautioned against "scams selling fake cures or vaccines" on Twitter.
Criminals are attempting to exploit #COVID19 through a variety of scams. Be aware of scams selling fake cures or va… https://t.co/8GDvQ0asUb— Justice Department (@Justice Department) 1588001872.0
The Justice Department forgot to mention that some of these shams are coming from inside the White House.
President Donald Trump has routinely promoted baseless claims of certain medications, mostly speculating that they're promising candidates for a cure.
Among the most notable of these is the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine, which the President touted from the podium during numerous press briefings. At least one person has died after ingesting aquarium cleaner that contained chloroquine, which he mistakenly believed to be the drug Trump boasted as a potential cure.
Most recently, Trump floated the idea of injecting disinfectants like bleach or isopropyl alcohol as a cure for the virus, citing their effectiveness in killing the virus on surfaces. This prompted some manufacturers of disinfectants to issue statements warning people not to ingest their products.
The Justice Department told its followers to report to them anyone who promised fake cures for the virus.
People happily obliged.
I saw a guy on TV the other day saying he was the President and telling people to ingest disinfectant to cure… https://t.co/qot7zOQhuy— Kat 4 Obama (@Kat 4 Obama) 1588012915.0
Hi, DOJ? I’d like to report an orange man I saw on the TV. I’m told he’s doing it on the twitter machine too. https://t.co/mBtUacTXVR— I’ll Be The Oversight (@I’ll Be The Oversight) 1588002126.0
Hello, @TheJusticeDept? (leans in and whispers...) "HE'S RIGHT BEHIND YOU." #ReportTrump https://t.co/XXBkgUIeDC— Austin Kocher (@Austin Kocher) 1588002664.0
I'd like to report the president. https://t.co/qS83EKymLv— Chris Geidner (@Chris Geidner) 1588002011.0
@TheJusticeDept Reporting this guy here: @realDonaldTrump— Ellen Datlow (@Ellen Datlow) 1588002313.0
Irony was working hard on Monday.
Isn't it ironic? Don'tcha think? https://t.co/nx1ujeFHVV— Stacy Tolchin (@Stacy Tolchin) 1588002146.0
are y'all for real right now? https://t.co/BPFwYJjNX9— Linzess Ozempic Jackson (@Linzess Ozempic Jackson) 1588002181.0
@chrisgeidner @gtconway3d Irony at it's best. Did they post this on purpose?— Susie Q (@Susie Q) 1588002220.0
For a deeper look into Trump's ineptitude, check out A Very Stable Genius, available here.