Hundred of people took to the streets of Mississippi without a mask in sight on Friday night after the state lifted their COVID 19 restrictions on March 3.
Oxford, home of Ole Miss, saw people out in full force, eating at restaurants and shopping at stores like the coronavirus pandemic was a distant memory – rather than a virus that has killed more than half a million people and infects tens of thousands on a daily basis.
Joe Biden slammed Mississippi and Texas‘ decisions to reopen this month as ‘Neanderthal thinking’ on Wednesday, warning that big, maskless gatherings would lead to another surge in coronavirus cases and deaths.
Texas is the largest state to lift their mask mandate, despite the fact that over 42,000 in Texas have died of COVID-19.
The president has since been criticized for his comment by conservatives including Montana governor Greg Gianforte who complained Biden was ‘degrading’ himself with ‘name-calling.’
Meanwhile, revelers across Mississippi seemed unconcerned by the threat of another COVID-19 surge as they packed into busy bars and clubs for the first time in months.
Ironically, the timing of these restrictions easing in Mississippi could not be any worse.
In February, the state reported a 62.4 percent increase in cases within a seven-day period. In total, there have been at least 296,000 COVID-19 cases and 6,783 deaths in Mississippi since the onset of the pandemic.
On Friday, Mississippi reported 576 new cases and 22 new deaths.
Mississippi will maintain their 50 percent capacity restriction on indoor arenas and keep their current rules in place for K-12 schools.
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