People in Maryland Flooded an Emergency Hotline to Ask If They Should Take Trump’s Advice on Disinfectants

Michael Reynolds/CNP/Zuma

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis and more, subscribe to Mother Jones’ newsletters.President Trump’s absurd suggestion that injections of disinfectants could help cure the coronavirus wasn’t, as he later suggested, a harmless stroke of sarcasm. More than 100 people in Maryland have earnestly called the state’s emergency management hotline asking about the use of household cleaners to treat COVID-19, according to Gov. Larry Hogan’s communications director.

ALERT🚨: We have received several calls regarding questions about disinfectant use and #COVID19.
This is a reminder that under no circumstances should any disinfectant product be administered into the body through injection, ingestion or any other route.
— Maryland Emergency Management Agency (MDMEMA) (@MDMEMA) April 24, 2020

Trump mused at a briefing on Thursday that disinfectant “knocks [the coronavirus] out in a minute, one minute” as Dr. Deborah Birx of Trump’s coronavirus task force hung her head in silent horror. The maker of Lysol urged consumers to not physically consume its products. And Marylanders used up valuable state resources to inquire whether they should follow the president’s advice.
The number one rule of sarcasm: It doesn’t work when you have to explain it.