Americans really are incredibly stupid.

Courtesy Yahoo News

In a series of interviews, doctors on the front lines in states where COVID-19 infections are exploding lamented the controversy in stark terms. They argue that mixed messages from mayors, governors and President Donald Trump are making it harder for people to appreciate the need for masking — especially as infections among younger citizens jump sharply.

“Honestly the politicization of science is one of our incredible societal downfalls. Science should not be politics,” Dr. Hilary Fairbrother, a Houston emergency medicine physician, told Yahoo Finance on Wednesday. The Lone Star state is in the throes of a record number of cases that threatens to overwhelm health systems in major cities like Dallas and Houston.

Fairbrother said the debate has become a Hobson’s choice that lacks nuance, between those who want to “close down the entire world for at least 3 years until there is no coronavirus left in any corner of the planet,” and others who are unconcerned about rising casualties.

“There’s no middle ground, there’s no common sense or application of good science,” she added. “I beg people to start listening to scientists, and stop listening to politicians on all things coronavirus.”

……….

“I’m not a constitutional scholar but this is what happens when you try and use federalism at the science level,” said Dr. Murtaza Akhter, an assistant professor in the University of Arizona’s Department of Emergency Medicine. The Grand Canyon State has nearly 60,000 cases and around 1500 deaths, and has been the center of a raucous public debate over mask-wearing in public.

“The fact that people are still saying ‘this is America, do what you want’ that’s fine from a legal or constitutional perspective, but from a public health and science perspective that’s a terrible idea,” Akhter said.

“We have a very different culture here. There’s no other country I know of in the world that debates masks,” Akhter added. “People don’t even debate seatbelts anymore… but to debate masks during a pandemic is so utterly ironic that it’s hard to comprehend.”

And of course, a large part of the reason why people are so stubbornly resisting the advice from scientists and the medial professionals is that we have right-wing propagandists and a guy in the White House telling us every day not to trust facts reported by news outlets. 

In this country that has caused a schism that has only become more defined in recent months which separates reality-based information consumers from faith-based believers who only trust information that comes from members of “their” tribe. 

This has clearly resulted in far more infections than should have occurred, and will likely result in multiple unnecessary deaths. 

So no wonder doctors are frustrated, they are dealing with a population who have been so dumbed down by fake news and reality television that they are virtually unable to separate fact from fiction.