Who is Dr Esther Choo? Internet furious after MSNBC health columnist says Thanksgiving 'should be canceled'
PORTLAND, OREGON: A MSNBC health columnist's idea of canceling Thanksgiving and moving winter holidays to prevent illness triggered a series of arguments among Twitter users. Dr Esther Choo, a professor of emergency medicine at Oregon Health and Science University, expressed her views on Wednesday, November 23, on how to prevent respiratory illnesses, such as COVID-19 and RSV, during the holiday season.
She tweeted that Thanksgiving should be canceled “for so many reasons” and winter holidays should be moved to the summer and it should be more “hygge,” or cozy. She also cited several benefits of such a move, which included “bad holiday-themed sweaters,” the shunning of snowed-in winter holiday travel, and the fact that one simply doesn't have to “endure” Thanksgiving. People grew skeptical initially of Choo's proposed idea as people were unable to understand if she was joking about her proposals and subsequently it prompted a flurry of heated responses and arguments among social media users over the proposed holiday agenda change.
“May I suggest…no,” Heritage Foundation Director of Media and Public Relations John Cooper tweeted. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis Rapid Response Director Christina Pushaw came up with her own suggestion, asking to “cancel public health tyrants” instead. The suggestion was also criticized by DeSantis’ deputy press secretary. “I can’t tell if you’re joking,” New York Times and NBC News contributor Benjamin Ryan said.
May I suggest we cancel “public health” tyrants instead? https://t.co/Sayq5XGQyQ— Christina Pushaw 🐊 🇺🇸 (@ChristinaPushaw) November 24, 2022
A few people agreed with the doctor’s comments. “Can you call my mother about this,” health and science journalist Melody Schreiber asked. Podcaster Josh Barro set off an extensive argument when he asked, “Do only total weirdos enter MPH [master’s in public health] programs or do MPH programs turn people into weirdos?” Heroes of Liberty Editor Bethany S Mandel replied, "Hypochondriacs fill the public health field. This is what we’ve learned in the last three years."
Do only total weirdos enter MPH programs or do MPH programs turn people into total weirdos? pic.twitter.com/6UgvYptx3G— Josh Barro (@jbarro) November 24, 2022
Hypochondriacs fill the public health field. This is what we’ve learned in the last three years. https://t.co/XbmA88iIdS— Bethany S. Mandel (@bethanyshondark) November 24, 2022
Ryan Marino, a medical toxicologist gave a disparaging response to Mandel, writing “Public health experts don’t know anything, right wing mommy bloggers are the real heroes.” Mandel then fired back, calling Marino a “misogynistic doctor,” appearing to take issue with his description of her credentials.
Other Twitter users also seemed to be furious over Dr Choo's suggestion. One user tweeted, "We’re not postponing or canceling anything. She’s free to do what she wants." Another user tweeted, "The attention these people received during the pandemic is receding, and they're panicking." One user simply tweeted, "Esther who?" while another suggested her an alternate choice by writing, "Or just move to Australia." "She’s welcome to sit in her home, in a closet, under her bed, or wherever she feels safe. Im gathering ", wrote one user.
We’re not postponing or canceling anything. She’s free to do what she wants.— Jonathan S. Kingston (@JS_Kingston) November 26, 2022
The attention these people received during the pandemic is receding, and they're panicking.— Tim Snell (@tj_snell) November 25, 2022
Esther who?— Area10/67 (@Area1067) November 26, 2022
Or just move to Australia pic.twitter.com/KJlMJNLPVR— Hoges#24 (@DickMandos) November 26, 2022
She’s welcome to sit in her home, in a closet, under her bed, or wherever she feels safe. Im gathering 🦃🎄— RC James 🐴🇺🇸 (@rcjames4) November 26, 2022
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