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President Donald Trump on Saturday took to Twitter after a game of golf to proclaim the ongoing rise in Covid-19 cases around the U.S. is due to increased testing around the country and not, as health experts have repeatedly explained, because the disease is continuing to spiral out of control around the nation.

“This continued Kindergarten-level logic is why we lead the world in Covid cases and deaths,” tweeted Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) in response to Trump’s latest salvo blaming testing for the increase in cases.

It doesn’t get less stupid if you say it more. https://t.co/LaG8k9mh93

— Machine Pun Kelly (@KellyScaletta) August 1, 2020

Trump, tweeting after being photographed on the golf course at his club in Potomac Falls, Virginia, took particular aim at his own expert, National Institutes for Health (NIH) director Dr. Anthony Fauci, who told lawmakers Friday that they should expect the pandemic to continue to surge in the U.S. and partially blamed the country’s keeping the economy 50% open as a major factor in the spread.

“If you look at what happened in Europe, when they shut down or locked down or went to shelter in place—however you want to describe it—they really did it to the tune of about 95% plus of the country did that,” said Fauci.

The doctor added that “when you actually look at what we did, even though we shut down, even though it created a great deal of difficulty, we really functionally shut down only about 50% in the sense of the totality of the country.”

Dr. Fauci explains why the U.S. has continued to see a surge in cases while European countries have seen a sharp decrease.

He says most European countries shut their economy by 95%, while functionally the U.S. only shut its economy down by 50%.https://t.co/pYCjQK5bri pic.twitter.com/IJdQ2Q1zKE

— CBS News (@CBSNews) July 31, 2020

The president fired back at Fauci Saturday, calling the public health expert—who has been the director of NIH since 1984—”wrong.”

“We have more cases because we have tested far more than any other country, 60,000,000,” said Trump. “If we tested less, there would be less cases.”

2. No, it’s not due to population. Here are those numbers, scaled up to a US population size of 328 million:

Spain: 21,582
France: 6,581
Japan: 3,426
Germany: 3,997
Canada: 4,473
UK: 4,330
Italy: 2,058

US: 70,904

The US is even 3.3x worse than the *worst* comparable country.

— Brian Klaas (@brianklaas) August 1, 2020

“Per capita, we’re not even in the top 15 countries for testing,” noted journalist Brian Karem. “Lithuania has tested more of its citizens per capita than us.”

As the New York Times reported, cases continue to rise around the country:

The virus is again picking up dangerous speed in much of the Midwest—and in states from Mississippi to Florida to California that thought they had already seen the worst of it.

As the United States rides what amounts to a second wave of cases, with daily new infections leveling off at an alarming higher mark, there is a deepening national sense that the progress made in fighting the pandemic is coming undone and no patch of America is safe.

The president’s response to the pandemic has been widely criticized for its prioritization of reopening the economy at seemingly nearly any cost and for having an inconsistent approach to testing, masks, and treatment—including, as Common Dreams reported, promoting the views of a Houston-area doctor with interesting views on the role of alien DNA in the manufacturing of medications.

“Bottom line: Trump doesn’t care if your children die if he thinks it helps him win in 2020,” tweeted radio host Dean Obeidallah.

News Source: alternet.org

Tags: religious right the country

Trump end run around Congress raises questions on his claims

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'The Matrix' is an allegory for being transgender, according to director Lilly Wachowski

"The Matrix" was so influential that it no longer seems special. Warner Bros.

  • "The Matrix" is about a man trying to escape a false reality by shedding an identity assigned to him by machines. 
  • Fans have longed viewed Neo's experience as a metaphor for being a closeted transgender person.  
  • Lilly Wachowski, co-director of "The Matrix," confirmed the fan theories on August 4 in a YouTube video.
  • "The corporate world wasn't ready for it," Wachowski said. "'The Matrix' stuff was all about a desire for transformation but it was all coming from a closeted point of view." 
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

It has long been a fan theory that "The Matrix," one of the most beloved science fiction films in cinematic history, is an allegory for being transgender. 

In early August, co-director Lilly Wachowski confirmed the theory was correct all along.

"The corporate world wasn't ready for it," Wachowski said in a YouTube video for Netflix Film Club. "'The Matrix' stuff was all about a desire for transformation but it was all coming from a closeted point of view." 

"The Matrix" series was born out of the imagination of two trans women, Lana and Lilly Wachowski. When the films were released, neither sister had publicly come out as trans.

"I don't know how present my transness was in the background of my brain when we were writing it but it all came from the same kind of fire," Lilly Wachowski said in the video. "Trans people exist — especially me and Lana — in this space where the words didn't exist, so we were always living in a world of imagination." 

'The Matrix' is about breaking free of a simulated false 'reality,' like trans people break free of their gender assigned at birth

In "The Matrix," all of humanity is trapped in a simulated world created by machines." The film's protagonist, Neo, is recruited to the rebellion against the simulation. 

Fans have long said the very concept of breaking free of the false reality of "The Matrix" is an allegory for transgender people realizing their real gender identity versus the one they were assigned at birth. 

—NetflixFilm (@NetflixFilm) August 6, 2020

According to fan theories, Neo sheds his identity that the Matrix assigned him by creating a new one in the real world, similarly to how transgender people often stop going by their deadname (the name assigned to them at birth) and find a new name for themselves. 

Switch was intended to be a transmasculine character 

A character named Switch would have been the most pointed allusion to transness in the Matrix, according to Wachowski.

Originally, the Wachowskis wanted Switch to present as a man in the real world and a woman in the matrix, acting as a metaphor for transmasculine people.  

While Switch is played as a woman in the film in both worlds, they are still presented androgynously as a nod to the original concept. 

The red pill may represent estrogen, a type of HRT used to treat gender dysphoria 

Neo is presented with two options by a mysterious figure named Morpheus in the beginning of the first film in the series "The Matrix," the red pill which will reveal the truth of the matrix and the blue pill which will allow Neo to forget his interactions with Morpheus and continue on in the false reality. 

Writer Andrea Long Chu theorized in her book "Females: A Concern" that the red pill is reflective of the color of estrogen pills, a common hormone replacement therapy (HRT) treatment given to transgender women and transfeminine people to treat gender dysphoria. 

—NetflixFilm (@NetflixFilm) August 6, 2020

The term "red pill" has also been used in the past by men's rights activists to mean an "awakening" from feminism, which is framed as a "false reality" oppressing men. 

Read More: 

6 myths about trans people from TV and film — and the truth behind them

The problematic history of trans characters on screen is laid out in Netflix's 'Disclosure'

Gabrielle Union says it was 'odd' to get so much praise for supporting her transgender stepdaughter Zaya Wade because that's her job as a parent

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