The Center for Disease Control has recommended Americans cancel their Thanksgiving travel plans due to COVID-19. Several states and municipalities have advised people not to host large gatherings indoors. Now is the time for calm, evenhanded leadership from elected officials advising their constituents to stay safe and socially distant as the pandemic worsens across the country.
That’s too much to ask some conservatives, though. To them, COVID-19 is a never-ending culture war.
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) November 22, 2020
Texas Senator Ted Cruz tweeted out this bizarre meme over the weekend, ostensibly challenging liberals to “come and take” his Thanksgiving turkey. It’s a reference to the Texas Revolution—Cruz replaced the famous cannon with a turkey. Even with that context it’s still idiotic as hell, so naturally it reflects the position of many conservative lawmakers and pundits in the wake of recent pandemic-related restrictions—that Democrats are using COVID-19 spikes to take away beloved American holidays.
In the replies to Cruz’s tweet, many pointed out how badly Texas is currently doing with the pandemic; the National Guard has been deployed to El Paso to help with the ongoing morgue crisis. People are literally dying of COVID-19 too quickly for mortuaries and funeral homes to keep up. Meanwhile, food lines at the North Texas Food Bank outside Dallas saw lines stretching thousands of cars long during a food distribution event over the weekend.
None of that matters to Cruz, who’s changed his occupation from U.S. Senator to full-time grievance peddler. He’s long since shifted into pretend cool guy mode, growing out a beard and trying the best he can to own the libs whenever possible. The next stage of that is, naturally, stupid memes that he assuredly thinks are badass. He’s not alone, either—a decent chunk of his repliers liked the meme and affirmed its batshit politics.
Democrats, liberals, and the mainstream media aren’t trying to take away anything. They and others are simply trying to promote safety and responsibility as the pandemic reaches its worst point yet. Cruz knows he’s being disingenuous, but that’s central to the act. Any hint of infringing upon conservatives perceived “freedoms” is a riot-level crisis, no matter how badly logic betrays that argument or how many people die because of it.
We didn’t need a stupid meme to remind us that Ted Cruz is incompetent. But it serves as a fresh warning that conservatives’ culture war will never end even as COVID-19 continues to claim thousands by the day. For Cruz and company, it’s all grievance all the time.