Throughout the pandemic that's killed over 600 thousand Americans and upended daily life in the United States for more than a year, Republican lawmakers and media personalities have repeatedly dismissed the severity of the threat, often opting for outright disinformation instead.
Despite swathes of willfully unvaccinated Americans and the stronger, more contagious Delta Variant of the virus continues to spread across the nation, filling hospitals to capacity and endangering countless lives.
Nevertheless, far-right Congressman Jim Jordan of Ohio continues to downplay the virus, pitting so-called patriotism against protection.
Just days ago, Jordan tweeted that municipalities and private businesses requiring vaccinations for certain activities was "un-American."
And on Tuesday, Jordan shared a video of the recent University of Wisconsin football game—a crowded event with nearly no masks in sight.
"Real America is done with COVID-19," reveled Jordan.
While it remains to be seen if the multi-thousand person crowd will lead to an uptick in Wisconsin's cases, the sad fact is that "real" America is far from done with the perils of the pandemic.
In Jordan's state of Ohio, conditions are grim. In a month's time, the daily rate of new cases has jumped from 1,742 to 5,874, with hospitalizations up 35 percent and deaths up a whopping 90 percent in the past two weeks. In Congressional District 4, which Jordan represents, there are 11.5 thousand confirmed cases per 100 thousand residents.
This is, sadly, a nationwide phenomenon, especially in red states that Jordan would undoubtedly consider "real" America. Just yesterday, the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare announced that residents can no longer rely on being treated at hospitals in the state's northern region due to "a severe shortage of staffing and available beds in the northern area of the state caused by a massive increase in patients with COVID-19 who require hospitalization."
Though vaccines have offered a glimpse of hope, the right's embrace of anti-vaccination conspiracy theories has resulted in the continued refusal of millions in their ranks to get vaccinated, contributing to the virus' ongoing potential to mutate, possibly resulting in the emergence of even more vaccine-resistant variants.
People called Jordan out for his continued false characterization of the state of the pandemic.
His use of the term "Real America" also saw widespread backlash.
Jordan shows no signs of clarifying his comments.