South Dakota guv Kristi Noem slammed for promoting Sturgis Rally: 'Are you out of your mind?'

Kristi Noem was slammed for encouraging people to come and join the rally despite the 277 percent spike in Covid-19 and spread of the Delta variant


                            South Dakota guv Kristi Noem slammed for promoting Sturgis Rally: 'Are you out of your mind?'
South Dakota guv Kristi Noem has been slammed for inviting people to take part in Sturgis Motorcycle Rally (Getty Images/ Melissa Sue Gerrits and Michael Ciaglo)

As the US is struggling with the 'Delta' variant of coronavirus, organizers of the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally in South Dakota have been facing a lot of backlash from the people on the internet. South Dakota governor, Kristi Noem, has also been slammed for encouraging people to come and join the rally despite the 277 percent spike in Covid-19 cases nationwide over the last three weeks.

Sturgis Motorcycle Rally is an annual event and also the world’s largest bike motorcycle rally. This year’s event, from August 6 to August 15, will be the 81st. The rally is famous for usually attracting approximately 700,000 riders to the town of Sturgis, whose population is just 7,000. According to reports, in 2020 also, a number of people attended the rally and many of them were seen without face masks. It has been said that for the event, the mask mandate was ruled out. “The Sturgis rally had many characteristics of a superspreading event: large crowds, high intensity of contact between people, potential for highly infectious individuals traveling from hotspots and events in poorly ventilated indoor environments,” as per a report quoted by The Daily Mail.

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Currently, US is struggling with the highly contagious 'Delta' variant, which was responsible for 109,824 new cases on Thursday, August 5. Besides, 535 coronavirus-related deaths were recorded the same day. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 93 percent of the cases are related to the 'Delta' variant, which includes its subtypes.

Motorcyclists drive down Main Street during the 80th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally on August 7, 2020 in Sturgis, South Dakota. (Photo by Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images)

 

As per health experts, the 'Delta' Variant is highly spreading in areas where vaccination rates are low. South Dakota is also not fully vaccinated with around 59 percent of eligible people receiving only one jab. Also, the total number of active cases in the state is 675, as stated by the South Dakota Department of Health. However, despite the serious situation, Noem is inviting people to join the rally, which helps boost the economy and brings on more than $800 million in sales, the state tourism department stated. “The rally is a behemoth, and you cannot stop it. I feel absolutely powerless,” a local named Carol Fellner told MarketWatch.

But social media did not seem to control their emotions after Noem tweeted, “Welcome to all the riders and visitors in South Dakota for the Sturgis Rally! Looking forward to joining you next week for a safe & fun ride in the Black Hills. #LetsRide.” A user slammed her saying, “Just start your weekend off at the rally. What are you waiting for? Go get the Delta, honey.” The second one wrote, “Wow. Seriously. Way to protect your people there Gov.”

“If you get more people killed of Covid than DeSantis do you get the 2024 GOP nomination?” the third one sarcastically asked the governor.



 

 



 

 



 

 



 

 

Motorcyclists drive down Main Street during the 80th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally on August 7, 2020 in Sturgis, South Dakota  (Photo by Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images)

A person commented, “There are probably more vaccinated immigrants at the border than there will be at this shit show.” Another one remarked: “Dear Unvaccinated Riders, Please mention you were at Sturgis in your hospital bill GoFundMe posts, so I'll know to keep scrolling. Sincerely, A Fellow Free American.” “And this is why I shall not be visiting South Dakotah this summer. 700 cases last summer when there was no Delta variant,” a tweet added.

One angry social media user said, "[email protected] : Are you out of your mind?! Do you not see what’s happening in Florida, Texas, Missouri? People - lots of them - are going to die because of this event you did nothing to stop. SMDH."



 

 



 



 

 



 

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