Laura Ingraham on Wednesday encouraged viewers of her Fox News show to spend Christmas with their families, even though official government advice is to limit contact with others in a bid to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
“Of course, act cautiously,” said Ingraham. “But Christmas is meant to be spent with your family, not isolated and locked down.”
On its website, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says “the safest way to celebrate the winter holidays is to celebrate at home with people who live with you. Gatherings with family and friends who do not live with you can increase the chances of getting or spreading COVID-19 or the flu.”
Ingraham had earlier in her monologue poured scorn on predictions that the United States would experience surges in the number of coronavirus cases because of people traveling and meeting up with friends and relatives for Thanksgiving and then Christmas.
But Johns Hopkins University notes that “an increase in the number of COVID-19 cases or hospitalizations will not be seen a week or even two weeks later. It seems to take much longer, perhaps as many as six to eight weeks, for effects of a policy or widespread behavior change to appear in the population-level data.”
Ingraham, who recently signed a new multi-year deal with the conservative network, later interviewed Dr. Scott Atlas, the controversial former White House adviser who promoted the idea of herd immunity to President Donald Trump.
Ingraham’s encouragement of viewers to ignore safety guidelines came on the same day that Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious diseases expert, warned the United States has “a big problem” with soaring new infections, hospitalizations and deaths resulting from the virus.
More than 300,000 Americans have now died from COVID-19.
“This cannot be business as usual this Christmas because we’re already in a very difficult situation, and we’re going to make it worse, if we don’t do something about it,” Fauci told The Washington Post, noting that his three adult children will not be visiting him over the holiday period.
Check out Ingraham’s comments here:
A HuffPost Guide To Coronavirus
- How long does it take for the coronavirus vaccine to work?
- Which masks will actually keep your face warm this winter?
- Can you close your COVID “bubble” without losing friends forever?
- How will spending the holidays in quarantine affect our mental health?
- What happens to all those face masks and gloves we’re tossing in the trash?
- Find all that and more on our coronavirus hub page.
As COVID-19 cases rise, it’s more important than ever to remain connected and informed. Join the HuffPost community today. (It’s free!)