Donald Trump's Nevada rally is generating some criticism for the lack of social distancing among the large crowd gathered to see the president, with one Vox reporter calling it "idiocracy come to life."
The president traveled to Nevada on Saturday to meet with a large crowd of supporters, most of whom were not wearing masks. As CNN reported, there were hundreds of supporters gathered at the gates to the Minden, Nevada, rally before they opened at 5 p.m., creating a rush to grab chairs and squeezing together when they were allowed onto the tarmac of the small airport.
As the report noted, some Trump supporters said they were not afraid of contracting the deadly virus, despite warnings from public health experts that it is not safe to be in close proximity to others, and especially not without facial coverings.
"I see people wearing masks on the street, avoiding getting close to other people -- it's sad. We have to be out and interacting, that's how we become immune. We need to develop immunity," Trump supporter Maria Ainsclugh told CNN.
"It's been eight months -- I think I'm immune. And if I get it, I go to the hospital a few days. It's not that bad."The lack of social distancing drew some sharp criticism, including from Vox reporter Aaron Rupar who shared images of attendees packed closely together, mostly without masks. He posted one picture facing the stage before Trump's arrival, with dozens standing in close proximity, holding signs supporting Trump and walking around. In the caption, he called the scene "idiocracy come to life." Rupar shared other highlights of Trump's speech to the crowd, noting that the president continued to downplay the coronavirus and made false claims that the only reason that the United States is showing a high number of cases is because "we have the best testing program in the world by far."
"Trump still doesn't understand that coronavirus testing does not cause coronavirus cases," Rupar tweeted, as seen here.
The president has come under fire this week after the release of tapes from interviews with journalist Bob Woodward, in which Trump was heard admitting back in February that he knew the virus was significantly more deadly than the common flu and that it could be spread through the air. In the weeks that followed, he made a number of public comparisons between COVID-19 and the flu, and downplayed the severity of the novel coronavirus. In another interview with Woodward in March, Trump admitted to intentionally downplaying the virus in statements to the American people.