“Most of the numbers are with the unvaccinated and the Democrats like to blame Republicans on that,” Patrick said. “Well, the biggest group in most states are African Americans who have not been vaccinated. The last time I checked over 90 percent of them vote for Democrats in their major cities and major counties, so it’s up to the Democrats to get, just as it’s up to Republicans to try to get as many people vaccinated.”
Patrick ended his statements by claiming that while he respects the rights of people who don’t want to get the vaccine and it won’t be forced, nothing is being done to the African American community “that has a significantly high number of unvaccinated people.”
Basically, Patrick expects some action to be taken, yet has never acknowledged the risk anti-maskers and anti-vaxxers pose during their protests which have repeatedly been violent towards the public and health care professionals.
In response to Patrick’s ignorant comments, Stanford Medical researcher Jorge A. Caballero provided data contradicting his statements. “Per the Census Bureau, 50% of unvaccinated adults in Texas are White (non-Hispanic) There are 3 unvaccinated White adults for every 1 unvaccinated Black adult in Texas 1 in 3 #COVID19 cases in Texas have been among White individuals Oh yeah, and Dan Patrick is a racist.”
Others noted that Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has blocked Black mayors, including those of Houston and Dallas, from implementing CDC recommended COVID-19 regulations, yet has “the audacity to blame Black people for the spread of COVID in his state.”
In Texas, conditions have gotten so bad elective and non-urgent medical procedures are once again being delayed to free up beds for COVID-19 patients. But despite the strain of the state’s hospitals and his own positive diagnosis, Abbott stays consistent in his views against implementing safety measures to stop the spread of COVID-19. Abbot has not only downplayed the pandemic since the first case of COVID-19 but has barred officials from imposing mask mandates.
But this isn’t the first time Patrick has spoken about Texas’s high COVID-19 case count or blamed others instead of taking responsibility. It’s just ironic he blames others while supporting anti-mask parents. Speaking to Fox News on Aug. 6, Patrik addressed the controversy behind school mask mandates alongside criticizing the Biden Administration.
“I have six, soon to be seven grandchildren and four of them are in elementary school,” Patrick said. “I’m not going to tell my son and my daughter-in-law what to do with their children regarding masks. I’m not going to tell my daughter and son-in-law what to do about their children and their masks. That’s up to my daughter and my son to make that decision based on a lot of factors.”
While Patrick expects Democrats to encourage individuals to get vaccinated, he doesn’t even believe in telling his own grandchildren to wear masks—even though masks have been proven to significantly lower the spread of COVID-19.
“So if I’m not going to tell my own son and daughter… why would I tell total strangers out there? We have five and a half million kids in public schools. That is more kids in school than half the states have people, I think. I’m not going to tell the parents of Texas, this is what you must do, and neither should the Department of Education or the Biden administration,” Patrick continued.
He then went on to blame the Biden administration for their lack of border control, alleging that COVID-19 was spreading in the state due to migrants at the border.
Across the country, more young adults and children are being admitted to hospitals at alarming rates and those under age 12 are not even eligible for the vaccine, putting them at greater risk. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), more than 121,000 COVID-19 cases in children have been reported in the week ending Aug. 12, representing 18% of all new cases nationwide.
As a result of Abbott’s mask ban, some Texas school districts even pushed back against Abbott’s anti-mask mandate in order to keep children safe through a clever loophole: making masks part of the dress code, Daily Kos reported. This week, Abbott withdrew that executive order in the face of increasing, unmanageable dissent from nearly every district in the state.
Despite previous data claiming that children are less likely to experience COVID-19 symptoms, new studies have found just how dangerous it can be for children to contract COVID-19 and how rapidly they can spread it. Instead of blaming Black folk for the virus and expanding on his racist claims, Patrick needs to take a look at reality and evaluate his own party’s stance. Without supporting safety regulations to stop the curb of the novel coronavirus, Patrick himself is encouraging a surge.
As of this report, less than 55% of Texans over 12 years old are fully vaccinated, data compiled by the Houston Chronicle found. This number lags behind the national rate of 60%.