As stronger, deadlier variants of the virus that's killed over 600 thousand Americans continue to emerge, right-wing disinformation outlets remain steadfast in their peddling of anti-vaccine conspiracy theories, presenting a major barrier in the national effort to vaccinate enough of the public to end the pandemic in the U.S.
Much of this hysteria has focused on an effort by the Biden administration to enlist volunteers to go door-to-door in under-vaccinated communities, providing information on where and how to get a lifesaving vaccine. Right-wing media personalities have falsely presented this as an initiative for government officials to "knock down doors" and demand proof of vaccination or even to force vaccinations upon unwilling Americans.
The stagnant vaccination rates have prompted some state leaders to propose a return to certain restrictions in an effort to protect the unvaccinated. Fox and Friends cohost Brian Kilmeade railed against the possibility of more restrictions in a Monday morning broadcast.
Doocy: 99% of people who are dying are unvaccinated Kilmeade: That's their choice! Doocy: They don't want to die.… https://t.co/QWc3XDAJLk— Lis Power (@Lis Power) 1626700168.0
"If you didn't get a vaccination, that's your choice. ... If you wanna go cliff diving this weekend, you don't have to check with me. It seems a little dangerous, but I'm not gonna judge you. And if you go ahead and put yourself in danger, if you feel as though this is not something for you, don't do it, but don't affect my life."
When cohost Steve Doocy pointed out that the vast majority of pandemic deaths are happening among unvaccinated Americans, Kilmeade responded:
"That's their choice!"
"They don't want to die. The administration and the government is saying we need the mask mandate to protect the unvaccinated."
Kilmeade then made the claim
"That is not their job! It's not their job to protect anybody!"
Social media users begged to differ.
"...insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare..." https://t.co/spJvzaMi6n— Rep. Eric Swalwell (@Rep. Eric Swalwell) 1626709727.0
If it's not the government’s job to protect the people, why do we have the Military, @kilmeade? https://t.co/w2MIlmnh49— David Weissman (@David Weissman) 1626702735.0
Per the Preamble, we adopted the Constitution "in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure dom… https://t.co/bV53qrR0aw— Steve Vladeck (@Steve Vladeck) 1626703990.0
After admitting that all three @foxandfriends hosts have been vaccinated, Brian @kilmeade says it's not the governm… https://t.co/w7oko5CyD6— Bad Fox Graphics (@Bad Fox Graphics) 1626701855.0
“…provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare…” - The Constitution https://t.co/isqtAydNVr— Kevin Baron (@Kevin Baron) 1626712458.0
"establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare" It's… https://t.co/p6iuhuBZqs— Derrick Crowe (@Derrick Crowe) 1626702286.0
People were enraged by Kilmeade's comments.
Fox New’s Brian Kilmeade is basically telling the Fox viewers that they shouldn’t worry about it & if they don’t ge… https://t.co/iaKSmRXEid— Ariana (Ari) Michaels 🏳️⚧️🏳️🌈 (@Ariana (Ari) Michaels 🏳️⚧️🏳️🌈) 1626702688.0
With Kilmeade’s logic I shouldn’t have to stop at red lights. https://t.co/9jdBleBV4Z— Sunshine (@Sunshine) 1626708630.0
Brian Kilmeade, speaking about Pentagon budget cuts eight months ago: "The impact would be reducing all sizes and c… https://t.co/GGhCRWGJqR— Roger Sollenberger found true love, suckers (@Roger Sollenberger found true love, suckers) 1626704135.0
Cases continue to rise in all 50 states.