During a virtual climate change summit hosted by the White House, President Joe Biden appeared to be the only world leader wearing a mask on the call. The two-day virtual event is made up of more than 40 world leaders including Chinese President Xi Jinping, Russian President Vladimir Putin, German chancellor Angela Merkel, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and EU leaders Ursula von der Leyen and Charles Michel. They could all be seen maskless on the call.
Addressing climate change is one of the key factors in the call between nations. While China’s president shared that they would strive to cut carbon dioxide emissions before 2030 and achieve carbon neutrality before 2060, President Biden announced his climate plan to cut greenhouse emissions by 50-52% by 2030 and his latest infrastructure plan.
President Biden said he has proposed a “huge investment” in American infrastructure and innovation that would produce and deploy clean technology for a “more prosperous and equitable future.” He said he could provide “millions of good-paying middle-class union jobs” by tapping into the economic opportunity that climate change presents to workers and communities.
While President Biden addressed his 40 invitees in saying America represents less than half of the world’s emissions and that “no nation can solve this crisis alone,” he made no reference to heavy polluters like China. He shared that preserving the planet was not only necessary but also provides a better future for all.
“All of us, all of us — and particularly those of us who represent the world’s largest economies — we have to step up. You know, those that do take action and make bold investments in their people, in [a] clean energy future, will win the good jobs tomorrow and make their economies more resilient and more competitive,” President Biden said.
However, Chinese President Xi Jinping spoke at a recent economic forum and discussed the “equitable management of global affairs” while criticizing the “unilateralism of individual countries,” which was an apparent swipe at the U.S. Xi shared that China would work with America in cutting emissions, but made no reference to any specific plans.
President Biden was seen in screenshots of the event wearing a mask to listen to other world leaders speak and only removed it for his own speech. Other United States officials in the room, including Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Climate Czar John Kerry, were also wearing masks and sitting six feet apart from each other, even though all of them have been vaccinated for COVID-19.
Social media users mocked President Biden for his decision to wear a face mask indoors during a video call, adding that he has embarrassed the United States in front of world leaders. One day Biden agrees with the science and the next day he’s vaccinated but wearing a mask on a Zoom call.
“Joe Biden was masked up for a Zoom Call with 16 other World leaders… He was the only idiot wearing a mask by himself… In a room for a Zoom Call… This isn’t a leader, this is an embarrassment,” tweeted political analyst Matt Couch.
Reporters have also asked White House press secretary Jen Psaki whether or not the White House would extend its call for Americans to wear masks beyond the “100-day mask challenge” that President Biden instituted when he first assumed office. Citizens have been pushing for new guidelines for fully vaccinated people as another way to encourage people to get the vaccine. Right now, the CDC states that fully vaccinated Americans can gather safely indoors in small groups, but should still wear a mask and social distance when they can.
Sen. Rand Paul recently accused the government of fearmongering instead of providing any evidence that we are spreading coronavirus after being fully vaccinated. He even suggested that President Biden should “light a torch to it and burn his mask and say, ‘I’ve had the vaccine. I am now safe from this plague. If you’ll get the vaccine you can be safe too.’”
It’s a fair question to ask why you should get a vaccine when afterward you still have to live like you didn’t. If you listen to Dr. Fauci and President Biden, he’ll tell you we have to wear masks until COVID-19 and all present and future variants are 100% eliminated. Life has risks and people learn to minimize those risks, but nothing is ever totally fail-safe. Wearing a mask on a Zoom call after being fully vaccinated is just virtue-signaling beyond repair.