Right-wing radio host Rush Limbaugh on Tuesday said cannibalism is just a way of adapting and that Americans had better adapt to the coronavirus.
Limbaugh, who previously said the COVID-19 infection was just the common cold, called the response to the pandemic “un-American.” He also compared the situation to the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918-19, saying then-President Woodrow Wilson never mentioned it.
“There was no national policy to deal with it,” Limbaugh said. “There was no shutdown, there was just, ‘Hey, go outside, get some fresh air, stand in the sun as long as you can, get some vitamin D, feel better.’”
Limbaugh didn’t mention that the pandemic killed 50 million people around the world, including 675,000 Americans, nor did he discuss the advances in science and medicine over the following century that inform today’s response. Instead, he said it was just one of the “things that happened to people that they dealt with — like the Donner party.”
The Donner Party pioneers were trapped in the Sierra Nevada Mountains by heavy snows in the winter of 1846-47.
“It was so bad that they had to turn to cannibalism to survive,” Limbaugh said. “That’s what’s noteworthy about the Donner Party.”
“They didn’t complain about it because there was nothing they could do. They had to adapt. This is what’s missing. There seems to be no concept of adaptation. There seems to be no understanding in the Millennial generation that we can adapt to this, and that we’re going to have to.”
With the coronavirus still spreading and no vaccine, Limbaugh said “life has to go on” and Americans shouldn’t be cowering to the threat of the virus. Then, he urged President Donald Trump to make a national address on this theme and use it as a core element of his reelection campaign.
See more of his comments in a clip posted online by the progressive watchdog group Media Matters:
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This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.