You’ve probably heard that the state of Florida continues to smash its daily Covid infection rate. It’s a public health crisis one would imagine fully preoccupies its lawmakers and other officials.
Therefore, when Matt Gaetz posted a video appearing to enjoy some fishing this weekend (it’s not clear if he was on the trip or resharing someone else’s video), it met with some criticism online.
Florida is the covid infection center of the country and your positing fishing videos. Glad to know where your priorities are.
— Davey Miller (@David_Miller_) August 8, 2021
But Gaetz was having none of it, asserting yesterday that it was simply what he did as a “Florida Man”.
“I can see you are not a #FloridaMan,” Gaetz posted to one critic. “In the Sunshine State it is always appropriate to fish.
Gaetz’s suggestion that a fishing trip was “always appropriate” (perhaps like Donald Trump and his golf), was not received well online.
Who among us hasn’t done our best fishing while a pandemic sweeps across every county in our state and our constituent’s children are going on respirators?
Good job, Florida.https://t.co/bRDLP3WiSG
— PoliticOhMyGawd (@PoliticOhMyGawd) August 9, 2021
awww bless, he thinks #floridaman is to be worn as a badge of honour.
— Ponderous Things (@ponderousthings) August 9, 2021
Hi, Walton County, Florida.
Here’s some information about Covid-19 in your area.
Your congressman is too busy fishing to provide it to you.https://t.co/U9ZBxbvcBb
— Vaxxed up & ready for whiteboards 🇺🇸MASKS work! (@rebelledeb) August 9, 2021
Given your upcoming prison sentence, the free part makes sense.
— cindy (@cindy38675838) August 9, 2021
Is that the new code word for dating underage girls?
— CB is Big Baby Jesus. (@ConservBlue2020) August 9, 2021
And if you’re under 18, you don’t need a fishing license 😉
— Turkey Tetrazzini (@TomTetrazzini) August 9, 2021
Do some actual work instead of trying to be deep thinker.
— Platypus tongue (@TonguePlatypus) August 9, 2021
Others also pointed out that apart from battling Covid, Florida is also fighting a so-called ‘red tide’ of toxic water, prompting thousands of fish to wash up dead along shorelines. It’s believed dumped wastewater has led to an explosion in algae growth.
“Always appropriate,” Matt?
Unless it’s red tide and the fish kill from commercial fertilizer runoff is record breaking.
— Lara – Florida Hostage (@DPWIMM) August 9, 2021
Except in the middle of a Red Tide.
— SSton (@SharinStone) August 9, 2021
Florida reported 23,903 Covid cases on Friday, breaking its single-day total for the third time in a week. Some commentators say that lawmakers, such as Senator Ron DeSantis and Rep. Matt Gaetz, are not helping matters.
On Monday, DeSantis’s office said it would consider withholding salaries from school officials that insist on all students wearing masks. Gaetz has also spoken out against mask mandates, and last month took part in an anti-mask protest within the Senate.