President Donald Trump is scrambling to expedite the reopening of the economy despite health experts warning that a premature return to normal could see a resurgence in the global pandemic that's already killed nearly 30 thousand Americans.
Constantly playing a game of follow-the-leader, Trump's devotees have now echoed these calls, assuring that an increased number of deaths wouldn't actually be that bad if it means a revitalization of the economy.
Congressman Trey Hollingsworth (R-IN) recently said that a loss of American lives wouldn't be as bad as the loss of "our way of life as Americans" threatened by a stagnant economy. Far-Right Fox News host Laura Ingraham said that many were willing to risk contracting the virus if it meant they could go back to work—not acknowledging that the virus could spread to those less willing and more vulnerable.
And now, Dr. Mehmet Oz is under fire for a recent interview with Fox News host Sean Hannity, in which he praised the idea of reopening schools.
DR OZ: "Schools are a very appetizing opportunity. I just saw a nice piece in The Lancet arguing the opening of schâ�¦ https://t.co/j208vgdW4M— Aaron Rupar (@Aaron Rupar) 1587050701.0
"Schools are a very appetizing opportunity. I just saw a nice piece in The Lancet arguing the opening of schools may only cost us 2 to 3%, in terms of total mortality. Any, you know, any life is a life lost, but to get every child back into a school where they're safely being educated, being fed...that might be a tradeoff some folks would consider."
Children across the United States are currently being homeschooled or learning from their teachers online in order to slow the spread. While the situation certainly isn't ideal, the consequences of returning them to school post an even graver threat.
The two to three percent that would be infected if schools reopened could result in the deaths of millions, as health experts predicted before stay-at-home orders were implemented in all 50 states.
People were livid at Oz's suggestion that a substantially greater loss of life was acceptable.
#FireDrOz. This is beyond disgraceful. https://t.co/9tjpybBhpu— Malcolm Nance (@Malcolm Nance) 1587051395.0
WHO IS WILLING TO BE TRIBUTE IN THE CORONA GAMES? https://t.co/d2KqYwS7Rh— W. Kamau Bell (@W. Kamau Bell) 1587060105.0
my god this absolute ghoul https://t.co/xeL90cZqqq— Patton Oswalt (@Patton Oswalt) 1587056385.0
Listen, I want daycare to open more than anybody, but I'm not about to send my kid back if it means me or my husbanâ�¦ https://t.co/V3MINjjPhI— Emily C. Singer (@Emily C. Singer) 1587050854.0
All doctors must take the Hippocratic Oath, the pillar of which is a vow to "do no harm."
Oz's statements left people wondering what his version of the Hippocratic Oath was.
The Hippocratic Oath - Dr. Oz edition: First, do 2 to 3 % harm. https://t.co/QUDYQDO5XL— Glenn Kirschner (@Glenn Kirschner) 1587053940.0
Totally consistent with the Hippocratic Oath, which says "First, do no harm, unless, you know, like 2-3% of the chiâ�¦ https://t.co/vI8JwKeUy5— Dominik StecuÅ�a (@Dominik StecuÅ�a) 1587051305.0
Dr. Oz's version of The Hippocratic Oath: https://t.co/OKhI63zT4W— Katie Phang (@Katie Phang) 1587065173.0
Not to mention, his use of the term "appetizing" struck many people as especially creepy.
I know everyone is rightly focused on the 2-3% dead children thing, but let's not sleep on the use of "appetizing"â�¦ https://t.co/ypRyMjnge7— Taffy Brodesser-Akner (@Taffy Brodesser-Akner) 1587055414.0
"appetizing" Is this the most perverse thing ever said about COVID-19? https://t.co/Pef9x51yll— Lawrence O'Donnell (@Lawrence O'Donnell) 1587055019.0
Certain number of dead kids and adults sounds "appetizing" to Dr. Oz. https://t.co/sjeHm3bqCO— Julia Davis (@Julia Davis) 1587054899.0
Dr. Oz has been criticized for his unsavory alliance with Trump's administration, in which he served on the Council on Sports, Fitness, and Nutrition.