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Sorry Karen, Bar Lives Don’t Matter

Honestly what is wrong with people.

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Despite our worst efforts and three months of self-imposed quarantine, the coronavirus pandemic continues to devastate the United States of America. This is happening for several reasons, but chief among them is Trump’s complete and utter failure to implement any sort of national plan for testing, contact tracing, or even mask-wearing.

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But state and local governments are also to blame, as they have buckled under pressure to reopen states from big corporations and an overzealous minority of right-wing conspiracy theorists. States like Texas, which reopened early, are now seeing a serious spike in daily cases. The state reported a record high on Monday of 5,913 individuals hospitalized for COVID-19, while new cases of the virus rose on Saturday to a record daily high of 6,263 new cases.

In response, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott ordered bars to close until further notice, which has angered Texans. Bar owners in Austin, Houston, and Galveston have filed lawsuits claiming that the governor has exceeded his authority under the state constitution. They also say that their businesses have been unfairly targeted, as opposed to other businesses like nail salons and spas.

Abbott responded, “As I said from the start, if the positivity rate rose above 10%, the State of Texas would take further action to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, … At this time, it is clear that the rise in cases is largely driven by certain types of activities, including Texans congregating in bars.”

Now, protesters have taken to the streets to demand that the bars reopen. Look, I love a dirty martini as much as the next girl, but don’t these people realize they can drink at home? Most egregious of all was one white woman holding a sign that read “Bar Lives Matter.”

Really, Karen? Really? What a gross and insulting example of privilege, to conflate the closing of a T.G.I.Friday’s with the fight against police brutality. As if ordering a skinny girl margarita is remotely on the same playing field as the Black Lives Matter movement. The ignorance is truly astounding.

Twitter was quick to come for the woman, tagging her as the latest example of absurd white privilege.

(via Yahoo News, image: screencap)

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Chelsea Steiner
Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. An pop culture journalist since 2012, her work has appeared on Autostraddle, AfterEllen, and more. Her beats include queer popular culture, film, television, republican clownery, and the unwavering belief that 'The Long Kiss Goodnight' is the greatest movie ever made. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband, 2 sons, and one poorly behaved rescue dog. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.

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