Kentucky Shopper Explains Why She Cut A Hole In Surgical Mask: Makes It “Easier To Breathe”




A Kentucky woman has gone viral after she was filmed shopping at a local gas station with a hole cut in her face mask, claiming that it made it “easier to breathe.”

Footage posted to TikTok showed a gas station clerk stunned to see the woman enter the convenience store with her face mask cut to fully expose her nose and mouth.

“Where did you get that mask from?” the gas station clerk can be heard asking the woman as she approached the counter.

“Well, since we have to wear them and it makes it hard to breathe, this makes it a lot easier to breathe,” she replied.



“Cutting it? Yeah, I’ll do that too, thanks for the advice.” the clerk mockingly said to the woman.

The footage has received over 800,000 likes since Friday.

Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear announced that shoppers will be requested to wear masks while in public starting May 11.

“While it’s gonna seem strange and is probably uncomfortable, I want us to know that this is just another small sacrifice that we can make to make sure that we keep each other safe,” Beshear said, reports the Louisville Courier Journal.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, face coverings should “fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face.”



The post Kentucky Shopper Explains Why She Cut A Hole In Surgical Mask: Makes It “Easier To Breathe” appeared first on The Gaily Grind.

Madonna, Steven Klein Criticized for Appearing to Flout Social Distancing Rules at Birthday Party Where ‘COVID Cake’ Was Presented


Madonna, who recently said she tested positive for coronavirus antibodies, and photographer Steven Klein were criticized after appearing at a birthday party for Klein which was broadcast over Zoom and included several other guests including musician and performer Joey Arias and party promoter and hostess Susanne Bartsch.

Page Six reports: “The aging Material Girl, 61, joked that her birthday-boy pal, photographer Steven Klein, was being honored with a ‘COVID cake’ during the live-streamed private gig, reported The Sun of Britain, Video and photos showed the ‘Like a Virgin’ singer getting up close and personal with Klein, 55, while hugging him, according to the Daily Mail. It was unclear how many people attended the party, but there were at least eight, the Mail said.”

View this post on Instagram

M made an appearance at @stevenkleinstudio 's Virtual Birthday Party ( thank you, @bartschland ? ) – such a blast!!! M called his Bday cake a Covid Cake ? She's too fucking cute!!! We are living in some crazy tiMes! But trying to make the most of it, and still have soMe fun!!! #HappyBirthdayStevenKlein??? #VirtualParty #TheyAreHereForHER !!! ? #ZooM #NYCNightlife ##Quarantine #NYCPAUSE @madonna – Susanne's gorgeous top hat & corset by @sparkylestudio ? *** P.S. This was an online party. She was in her own home w/her faMily and crew that she has been quarantining with. There were about 5 people that came to her home (or Steven's?) to celebrate Steven's bday, and all of these people have been quarantined for over a month as well. Please stop the Madness – she would never put herself or her children at risk!!! ***

A post shared by Michele L. Ruiz (@micheleruiznyc) on

Manager Michele Ruiz, who posted a screenshot video of the party online, defended Madonna, Klein, and the crew, writing, “P.S. This was an online party. She was in her own home w/her family and crew that she has been quarantining with. There were about 5 people that came to her home (or Steven’s?) to celebrate Steven’s bday, and all of these people have been quarantined for over a month as well. Please stop the Madness – she would never put herself or her children at risk!!!”

Klein also defended the bash, writing, “We have all been quarantined together for over a month. We take it very seriously.”

Followers didn’t believe him, accusing him of lying and criticizing the group for “not taking social distancing as well as you should.”

Late last week, in one of her ‘Quarantine Diaries’, Madonna said she had tested positive for coronavirus antibodies and said, “So tomorrow, I’m just going to go for a long drive in a car, and I’m gonna roll down the window and I’m gonna breathe in — I’m gonna breathe in the COVID-19 air.”

View this post on Instagram

#staysafe #staysane

A post shared by Madonna (@madonna) on

In March, Madonna called coronavirus “the great equalizer” while sitting in a bath surrounded by rose petals.

Said Madonna: “That’s the thing about COVID-19. It doesn’t care about how rich you are, how famous you are, how funny you are, how smart you are, where you live, how old you are, what amazing stories you can tell. It’s the great equalizer, and what’s terrible about it is what’s great about it. What’s terrible about it is it’s made us all equal in many ways — and what’s wonderful about it is that it’s made us all equal in many ways. Like I used to say at the end of “Human Nature” every night, we’re all in the same boat, and if the ship goes down, we’re all going down together.”

The post Madonna, Steven Klein Criticized for Appearing to Flout Social Distancing Rules at Birthday Party Where ‘COVID Cake’ Was Presented appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.

‘Queer as Folk’ Cast Reunites Virtually to Benefit LGBT Centers Amid Pandemic: WATCH LIVE


Most of the main cast members from Queer As Folk are slated to reunite virtually at 2 p.m. Eastern on Friday.

The cast’s “May Day Home Stay Gay Play” will benefit LGBT community centers that are struggling amid the coronavirus pandemic.

People reports: Sharon Gless (Debbie), Peter Paige (Emmett), Michelle Clunie (Melanie), Hal Sparks (Michael), Randy Harrison (Justin) and Robert Gant (Ben), alongside creators Ron Cowen and Dan Lipman are all expected to appear on the livestream, with more cast members expected to be announced. “It’s almost our 20 Year Anniversary, WTF? Please come help us reminisce and raise money for an amazing organization,” wrote Harrison on Instagram about the upcoming reunion, before adding. “I’m not a reliable source of further information, but I will be there and I will be spilling. the. tea. You know me, yak yak yak.” Fans watching the reunion will be able to bid on show memorabilia while donating to CenterLink, which supports over 250 LGBTQ community centers nationwide.

Watch it live below.

The post ‘Queer as Folk’ Cast Reunites Virtually to Benefit LGBT Centers Amid Pandemic: WATCH LIVE appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.

Todrick’s ‘Mask, Gloves, Soap, Scrubs’ is a ‘Nails, Hair, Hips, Heels’ Remake to Lighten Up These Dark Times: WATCH


todrick

Todrick has released a remake of his summer 2019 hit “Nails, Hair, Hips, Heels” for the lockdown era. “Mask, Gloves, Soap, Scrubs” features rewritten lyrics and a video of many familiar faces working their fiercest at-home lewks.

Wrote Todrick: “Nina Simone once said ‘It’s an artist’s duty to reflect the times.’ I wrote this in four days because I noticed a lot of people were down and needing something to uplift them, make them smile and want to dance during this dark time. I by no means am attempting to diminish the severity of this pandemic, but trying to show that you can still be creative, still have fun and be fabulous from the comfort of your own home. I hope you enjoy, I hope it inspires you to dance (tag me, I will be watching and sharing) and I hope it brightens your day just a tad. Love you and all and please stay safe. We are going to get through this. Mwah”

The video features Howard Johnson, Antonio Harvey, Sean Viator, Lockhart Brownlie, Tyler Rowe, Brian Friedman, Nolan Edwards, Liv Quantriill, Peppermint, Bob the Drag Queen, Walker Walker, Jonathan Sison, Laganja Estranga, Eureka, Monet Exchange, Willam, Trinity The Tuck Taylor, Alyssa Edwards, Nicole Scherzinger, Curtis Pritchard, AJ Pritchard, Jonathan bennett, Holly H, Baby Brody, Jade Thirlwall, Kandi Burriss, Tamar Braxton, Rickey Thompson, Tiffany Haddis,h Amber Riley, Lissa Rinna, Baga Chipz, Amber Gill, Vinegar Strokes, Paul Burrell, Terrell Grice, Bobby Berk, Tan France, Montana Tucker, Matt Steffanina, Colleen Ballinger, Tommy Bracco, Christie Murphy, Nick Maccarone, and Glozell.

The post Todrick’s ‘Mask, Gloves, Soap, Scrubs’ is a ‘Nails, Hair, Hips, Heels’ Remake to Lighten Up These Dark Times: WATCH appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.

Is There ‘No Such Thing as Returning to Normal?’ Your Questions About Reopening America Amid COVID-19 Answered


Two men in face masks working out in the park during a coronavirus lockdown / Photo by Kate Trifo – Unsplash

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for The Big Story newsletter to receive stories like this one in your inbox.

As some governors prepare to relax social distancing restrictions in their states, ProPublica hosted a digital event on Thursday answering your questions on how to safely leave home, reopen businesses and return to work. Based on a recent ProPublica article that pulled together seven key lessons learned by scientists, doctors and researchers in other countries that have battled the virus, the digital event assembled Editor-in-Chief Stephen Engelberg; health care reporter Caroline Chen; and Andy Slavitt, former head of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, to take questions and share what they’ve learned that can help all Americans for the days, weeks and months ahead.

“I think the big takeaway is there’s no such thing as returning to normal,” Chen said of what she learned after interviewing front-line officials from Italy, Germany, Spain, Singapore, Taiwan and South Korea. “And the goal should not be ‘normal.’”

She found that the experts she consulted consistently recommended that governors should plan to track where the virus is spreading by coordinating a large army of contract tracers and have a well-thought-out plan for isolating infected people. Across the board, they expressed the idea of never letting one’s guard down. “You cannot relax,” she said. “Because the second you relax, there’s going to be a second wave.”

Slavitt stressed that states are not prepared, even as Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp recently allowed hair salons, barbershops, tattoo parlors, massage therapists and gyms to open back up. “The thing that I try to remind everybody is just because the governor says you can do something, doesn’t mean you should do something,” he said, citing a recent Kaiser Family Foundation study that found 80% of Americans are actually in favor of strict shelter-in-place orders to limit the coronavirus’ spread.

“If you are an essential worker, wear a mask, keep socially distancing and require as much as possible that we can continue to keep you safe,” Slavitt said. “Because we can recover from an economic downturn. We can’t recover when we lose people.”

Here are a few highlights from their answers to your questions.

Q: We know massive testing is required to detect where the virus is spreading. But with reports of false negatives and companies producing non-FDA-approved products, how accurate are all of these tests?

Chen: “Because of the urgent need for more tests and to have them widely available, the FDA has been lowering the bar for what it requires of manufacturers before it gives them authorization for tests. It’s not that there is no information that the FDA requires from manufacturers, but definitely it is requiring less of manufacturers than before. … The companies are being asked to provide information on contrived samples, which are kind of like fake samples, instead of information from real-life patient samples. So they are validated to some degree, but you don’t really know how they perform in the real world. But that’s the only way that you can get lots and lots of tests out in the real world really quickly. So this is a trade-off.”

Q: How do we deal with the challenges of 50 states versus one nation? What is the impact of someone driving from an “open” state to a “closed” one?

Engelberg: “It’s definitely easier in countries that have a very tightly controlled central government, if they have a powerful health system. Look at Taiwan, for example, where the vice president happens to be an epidemiologist, and their response was more organized.

You look at South Korea, where they went through a very bad experience with MERS, and the result was they passed a whole bunch of laws that empowered the health establishment to do things quickly and on a national level. That’s not the country we live in. And there are some good things about that.

The bad news is, the virus respects no boundaries. It goes through tunnels; it goes over bridges. It goes across roads and borders. … Contact tracing would be great if the federal government could put the right number of contact tracers in every state right now. We have millions of unemployed people who can be put to work. We did that in the Depression with various conservation measures — the WPA — but that does not exist right now. I think that’s a net deficit for us.”

Q: What do the experts really think is the probability of developing a vaccine in the near future?

Chen: “The numbers that we’ve heard are a year, to a year and a half, at the soonest. I’ve also heard some people say, ‘Well, we don’t have a vaccine for HIV.’ I do think that the coronavirus is more well understood and better characterized than something like HIV — that virus is very wily and has been an incredibly tough nut to crack.

So I’m more optimistic about that than HIV. But I think there are questions that scientists are still trying to figure out, which are: For people who have been infected and have antibodies, how long will they be protected? How long will that immunity last?

There are diseases like chickenpox where you get it once, you’re protected for life. And then there are other diseases, where we get the flu shot every year. And then there are vaccines where you need to get regular boosters. So even if we do come up with a vaccine in the near future for this coronavirus, is this going to be a ‘one and done’ or are we going to need to have some sort of booster? These are all things that scientists are currently trying to figure out and are going to have to be sorted out over the next year to two years.”

Slavitt: “I think we’re going to have to accept the answer we don’t know. If you want to find a very persuasive article that says we’re going to have a vaccine in six months, you can find one. If you want to find one that says it’s going to take five years or longer, you can find one. You can find one that says it’s impossible too.

None of them peer reviewed; all of them based on a little bit of information. I would just advise not to get our hopes and fears attached to either direction. There’s a lot more we don’t know than we do know, and if you’re not hearing people say ‘We don’t know’ a lot, then they’re probably not a great source. …

We should be encouraged that there are a lot of trials and that there are human trials already. We should be discouraged that the head of BARDA was just replaced because he’s been working on this his entire life to be ready for these moments. And we should hold the standard that we want our smart scientists all working on this.”

Engelberg: “What you are watching right now is science unfolding in real time. And science is really messy. If you go back and look at the history of any disease, there were a number of things that were believed to be absolutely true that turned out to be absolutely untrue. And we’re going to have that here.

I’m sure some of our listeners or viewers here are old enough to remember when we were telling people they got ulcers because they had stress and they should drink milk. Then, of course, science advanced, and we discovered something very different. …

Science feels so precise and so wonderfully smarter than all the rest of us. But the truth of the matter is, I think having covered science a lot, it’s often wrong, confusing, boisterous, raucous and changing direction all the time. And that’s the way it is.”

Get invites to future conversations by signing up for The Big Story newsletter.

The post Is There ‘No Such Thing as Returning to Normal?’ Your Questions About Reopening America Amid COVID-19 Answered appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.

Barry Diller on Trump and Coronavirus: ‘Unfortunately, We Have a Witch Doctor as President’ — WATCH


Barry Diller

Billionaire IAC and ExpediaGroup CEO Barry Diller told Face the Nation‘s Margaret Brennan that “there’s no chance, certainly this summer,” of things getting back to normal amid the coronavirus crisis and had dire predictions for the U.S. economy.

“To anyone who thinks that this economy is going to bounce, I mean you’d have to have the idea of a rubber ball not in existence to think it’s going to bounce high,” said Diller. “It can’t. The damage that’s being done is catastrophic.”

Added Diller: “You’re going to have a massive amount of businesses that can’t return, businesses that go bankrupt. It’s inevitable. And hopefully, the government will, so to speak, pick up the tab, because this is an existential crisis and we shouldn’t worry so much about doing it in a neat way. It ought to be sloppy to get that money out to everybody who needs it.”

“We’re going to have to be told [what to do to return to normal activities],” Diller added. “Now, unfortunately, we have a witch doctor as a president and he ain’t going to tell us. But the science part of it, I think that has to be translated into more practical solutions. So somebody is gonna have to say, ‘Yes, you must wear masks, period, or no, take your chances. But the chances are pretty good.’ There’ll be a teething period where we’ll kind of get used to this.”

Diller said we would “learn some stuff” as people who refuse to stay in their houses start to mingle.

He also offered some hope: “I do not believe that life is ever changed. At some point I think this is going to be over, and we humans are going to get back to the life that we have made for ourselves. Basically, we’re all going to get together again.”

The post Barry Diller on Trump and Coronavirus: ‘Unfortunately, We Have a Witch Doctor as President’ — WATCH appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.

Randy Rainbow Taps Mary Poppins for Coronavirus Classic: ‘A Spoonful of Clorox’ — WATCH


spoonful of clorox randy rainbow

Donald Trump’s suggestion that people might try ingesting disinfectant to “knock out” coronavirus gave Randy Rainbow a few ideas for other home remedies, with an assist from Mary Poppins.

Sings Rainbow: “Some Pledge on your pancakes makes coronavirus pass, coronavirus pass, coronavirus paaasss — if it gives you gas try some bleach in your beer, and shove a flashlight up your ass. Heal yourself with UV rays! … A little Drano in your cup will clear your sinuses right up, and quench your thirst unless it kills you first.”

The post Randy Rainbow Taps Mary Poppins for Coronavirus Classic: ‘A Spoonful of Clorox’ — WATCH appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.

Trump Claims Comments on Ingesting Disinfectant Were ‘Sarcastic’

President Donald Trump claimed Friday he was being “sarcastic” when he suggested a day before that disinfectants could be ingested or injected to treat COVID-19.

“I was asking a question sarcastically to reporters like you just to see what would happen,” Trump said in the Oval Office.

Earlier Friday, the White House attempted to walk back insane suggestion.

“President Trump has repeatedly said that Americans should consult with medical doctors regarding coronavirus treatment, a point that he emphasized again during yesterday’s briefing,” White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in a statement. “Leave it to the media to irresponsibly take President Trump out of context and run with negative headlines.”

More from the Washington Post: The question, which Trump offered unprompted, immediately spurred doctors, lawmakers and the makers of Lysol to respond with incredulity and warnings against injecting or otherwise ingesting disinfectants, which are highly toxic. “My concern is that people will die. People will think this is a good idea,” Craig Spencer, director of global health in emergency medicine at New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center, told The Washington Post. “This is not willy-nilly, off-the-cuff, maybe-this-will-work advice. This is dangerous.” … Even before the president’s musings, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report released Monday found U.S. poison control centers were seeing a surge in calls about exposure to cleaners and disinfectants amid the coronavirus outbreak. Between January and March, there were 45,550 calls — a 20.4 percent increase from the same period last year.

More reactions below.

The post Trump Claims Comments on Ingesting Disinfectant Were ‘Sarcastic’ appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.

University holds ‘lavender graduation’ to celebrate LGBT+ students. Straight, white Americans will have to wait until 2021

A Lutheran university in Minnesota is shaking up its schedule for graduation, prioritising its students that are LGBT+, of colour or international.

St Olaf College, like many around the world, has to to put off its graduation ceremonies until next year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

But the university’s Taylor Center for Equity and Inclusion has announced that three virtual graduation ceremonies will go ahead.

The “multicultural, international and lavender” graduations will take place in May, and are intended for domestic students of colour, international students, and LGBT+ students, respectively. All other students must wait until 2021.

According to Campus Reform, the Taylor Center said in an email announcing the graduations: “This event acknowledges the value and uniqueness of students’ experience and serves to commemorate and highlight the accomplishments of individuals within their familial and cultural context.”

Although most would think that lifting up and celebrating minority groups in education is a good thing, there were of course some people that were unhappy with the decision.

Right-wing Fox News host Pete Hegseth took to Twitter to complain about the news, claiming it was “racism” and the “insanity of the left”.

Political commentator Alyssa Ahlgren added: “When you’re so ‘woke’ that you’re racist, discriminatory, non-inclusive, and bigoted.”

One of her followers agreed: “Woke and racism go hand in hand. You can’t find anyone more racist than leftist.”

One Twitter user offered a problematic solution: “Straight, white American students at St Olaf should host their own virtual graduation ceremony.”

The Taylor Center has held multicultural and international graduations multiple times before, but only began holding the Lavender Graduation Celebration ceremony last year, even providing LGBT+ students lavender cords to wear with their gowns.

Asisstant director for wellness, gender and sexuality Jon Mergens told the Manitou Messenger in 2019: “Celebrating the accomplishments and recognising the work of our students is as important as advocating and rallying around social justice and change.”

 

The post University holds ‘lavender graduation’ to celebrate LGBT+ students. Straight, white Americans will have to wait until 2021 appeared first on PinkNews – Gay news, reviews and comment from the world's most read lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans news service.

Cuomo Slams ‘Ugly, Petty, Reckless’ McConnell for Opposing ‘Blue State Bailouts’: WATCH


New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo responded Thursday to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s recent comments opposing so-called “blue state bailouts.”

“What he’s saying is that if you look at the states that have coronavirus problems, they tend to be Democratic states — New York, California, Michigan, Illinois, they are Democrat states,” Cuomo said during his daily press briefing.

“How ugly a thought? I mean, just think of what he’s saying,” Cuomo added. “People died. Fifteen thousand people died in New York, but they were predominantly Democrats, so why should we help them? I mean, for crying out loud, if there was every a time for you to put aside your pettiness and your partisanship, and this political lens that you see the world through — Democrat and Republican, and we help Republicans but we don’t help Democrats.

“That’s not who we are,” the governor said. “It’s just not who we are as a people. If there was ever a time for humanity and decency, now is the time. And if there was ever a time for you to stop your obsessive political bias, and anger — which is what it’s morphed into, it’s just a political anger — now is the time. And you want to politically divide this nation now, with all that’s going on? How irresponsible and how reckless.”

More from Cuomo below.

The post Cuomo Slams ‘Ugly, Petty, Reckless’ McConnell for Opposing ‘Blue State Bailouts’: WATCH appeared first on Towleroad Gay News.