'Angry and ashamed': Florida doctors slam DeSantis for blocking COVID precautions in push to reopen state
A group of doctors in Florida is outraged by Gov. Ron DeSantis' handling of the COVID-19 pandemic as the governor continues to rail against public health officials' recommendations to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.
According to WLRN, the group, which consists of more than 400 Florida physicians, is pushing back against the Republican governor, and arguing that his leadership is actually contributing to the rise in COVID cases.
Bernard Ashby, a Miami cardiologist who heads the Committee to Protect Health Care in Florida, admitted that she is "angry and ashamed" of DeSantis' handling of COVID in the Sunshine State.
"As a physician and a Floridian, I am frankly angry and ashamed. You know the Florida-man moniker, unfortunately, holds true in this particular circumstance," Ashby said.
"While hospitals in our state were filling up, DeSantis was shouting about 'Freedom over Faucism,'" Ashby continued. "If DeSantis were as concerned about stopping COVID-19 spread as he was about coming up with these clever jabs about Dr. Fauci, we might not be in this position."
Christina Pushaw, a spokesperson for DeSantis is pushing back against the sharp criticism. In a statement to The News Service of Florida, Pushaw argued that the physicians aren't "well-informed."
"The governor has made countless public appearances all over the state to encourage vaccination, and he has spoken positively of the vaccines in public remarks nearly 100 times this year," Pushaw said in a statement to The News Service of Florida. "He's proud of the successful rollout and the Seniors First strategy, which means 85 percent of our most vulnerable population is vaccinated, and thousands of lives saved. COVID cases, hospitalizations and especially deaths are down significantly compared to this time last year."
However, doctors are still concerned. St. Petersburg immunologist Mona Mangat admitted that she was pleased that DeSantis has encouraged residents to get vaccinated, but she still has concerns about his rhetoric.
"At the same time as DeSantis says the vaccines are effective --- which they are --- he's also banning businesses from requiring proof of vaccination." said Mangat, also part of Florida's Committee to Protect Health Care. "He has taken away private companies' ability to protect their employees and customers by requiring the safe and readily available vaccine."
Texas restaurant faces the wrath of the internet after staff get called out for humiliating Spanish-speaking teen
People in Gainesville, Texas, are outraged after a Facebook post claimed the owner of a local restaurant berated and humiliated a "teenage busboy" who doesn't speak English.
The post was made by Whitney Galubenski Vogl, who wrote that she and the group of people she was with witnessed "the worst experience we've ever had in a restaurant."
"We just witnessed the owner of Trails Inn (on Hwy 82 in Gainesville) cuss out, berate, belittle, and humiliate a teenage busboy (who was the only person cleaning tables in a packed restaurant)," Vogl wrote. "A waitress was carrying a big stack of plates out of the kitchen. She dropped them all, and blamed the bus boy for making her drop them. She yelled at him, then walked off and left all the food and plates in the floor. It happened right next to us, and it was NOT the boy's fault."
But it didn't stop there.
"Then our waitress starts yelling repeatedly at him 'Come on BOY, go clean up your mess.' Then the owner (I think he's the owner) comes over and starts yelling at the young man, in front of the whole restaurant, and he finishes by screaming at the boy that he's a 'F*CKING LOSER,'" the post continued. "Our friend spoke to the boy in Spanish asking if he's ok, if he has any family working in the restaurant with him (he doesn't), if he speaks English (he doesn't), etc."
On July 26, a post went up on the Trails Inn Facebook page saying that the restaurant "will be taking some steps this week to make it known to the community that we are on the track for the better."
"First off we will be giving the busboy of the incident ... a thousand dollars bonus check along with his regular payment for employment. We understand compensation is not enough and we have spoken personally with the busboy to work with him to better our environment," the post read, adding that the restaurant would be partaking in numerous initiatives "to show that we our behind the community 100 percent."
Angry residents have expressed their displeasure with the restaurant on their Facebook page.
"How dare you treat someone that works for you with such disrespect. I will NEVER eat at your restaurant," one person wrote on their Facebook page.
"Funny you turn off reviews? Why? Truth hurts huh! Can't wait to stop in on our way back from vacation to support that young man! That is if your restaurant is still open!" added another.
The restaurant has also faced backlash on Yelp, but the website has temporarily disabled new reviews from being posted.
"Don't eat here unless you want to support an owner who treats his employees like literal garbage," one Yelp user wrote in their review.
"Wouldn't spend a penny at this place. The owner regularly berates his employees in front of his customers. Further, certain employees are allowed to berate others too. Supporting this business supports bullying," another person said.
According to a report from News12, Trails Inn operations manager Goni Mena said there's "no excuse" for what happened.
"Nobody should be spoken to like that, especially a young gentleman just trying to get a paycheck at the end of the day," Mena said, adding that the waitress involved in the incident has been fired.
"It's not only me that apologizes, (it's) everybody in that restaurant. We have three generations of family working there....We want to help and do everything that we can to get back into the good graces with this community," Mena said.
Bibiana Rodriguez, who is a friend of the busboy's family, told News12 she is thankful for "everyone out there who had kind words to say about him."
"How they were helping him, the community has done an amazing job at that. We just want to thank everyone out there," Rodriguez said.
Former US cardinal Theodore McCarrick has been charged with sexually assaulting a teenage boy, court documents showed Thursday, making him the most senior Roman Catholic official in America to face criminal charges in the massive clergy abuse scandal.
The 91-year-old, a former archbishop of Washington DC, was slapped with three counts of indecent assault and battery against a child over 14, according to a filing in a Massachusetts district court.
McCarrick was thrown out of the Catholic Church in 2019, becoming the highest-ranking Church figure to be expelled in modern times.
He had been found guilty by the Vatican of sexually abusing at least one teenage boy in the 1970s and of sexual misconduct with adult male seminarians.
McCarrick, who played a key role in raising funds for the Holy See from wealthy US donors, was stripped of his cardinal's title in 2018 before he lost his priest's status the following year.
A 450-page Vatican report published in 2020 concluded that McCarrick was able to rise through the ranks of the Church despite years of sexual misconduct allegations.
The Vatican admitted last November that late pope John Paul II ignored advice against promoting McCarrick over the sexual assault rumors that were later substantiated.
Prosecutors allege that McCarrick groped the victim when he was 16 in 1974 as they walked around the campus of Wellesley College in Massachusetts during his brother's wedding reception.
The victim says that McCarrick led him into a room and groped his genitals while "saying prayers," according to the criminal complaint.
The ex-cardinal has been the subject of several civil lawsuits brought by accusers but this is the first criminal case against him.
The man's lawyer, Mitchell Garabedian, said his client was "showing an enormous amount of courage" by bringing the complaint.
"This is the first cardinal in the United States ever charged criminally for a sexual offense against a minor," he said in a statement to AFP.
McCarrick's attorney, Barry Coburn, told AFP he and his client "look forward to addressing the case in the courtroom."
The Catholic Church has been shaken by a string of child sex abuse scandals in recent years.
A grand jury investigation into Pennsylvania dioceses in 2018 exposed the systematic cover-up by the Church of sexual abuse by "over 300 predator priests".
More than 1,000 child victims were cited.
Between 1950 and 2016 the US Catholic Church received 18,500 complaints against 6,700 members of the clergy, according to the site bishop-accountability.org.
Several senior church members in the US have been forced to resign for protecting sex offender priests, including the late cardinal Bernard Law.
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