Education Secretary Miguel Cardona tweeted Tuesday about how much he loved to see children smiling at school — and critics immediately swarmed to point out the glaring problem with his comment.
“Today’s #LoveTeaching theme is “Tremendous Tuesday” where we are challenged to tell a 6-word story that describes why you #LoveTeaching,” Cardona tweeted from his official government account. “Mine is: The smile on a student’s face.”
The smile on a student's face.
— Secretary Miguel Cardona (@SecCardona) February 16, 2022
Congressman Lee Zeldin (R-NY) asked whether the tweet was a call for governors like Kathy Hochul (D-NY) to remove the face mask mandates for schools.
“So are you calling for the New York State Governor Kathy Hochul to lift her statewide mask mandate on kids as young as 2-years-old which still requires our children to be masked up all day? Or are you just full of crap with your statement? Choose a side Mr. Secretary!” Zeldin tweeted.
“Sometimes if their masks are tight enough, you can see their smiles curl under the cloth,” Ellen Carmichael, the president of a political communications firm, added.
Fox Business anchor Maria Bartiromo responded with just two words: “Really??!! Wow.”
Congressman Jeff Van Drew (R-NJ), who only recently changed parties from Democrat to Republican, responded as well.
“Really? When is the last time you’ve seen a smile on a student’s face?” he asked. “This is yet another example of the Left being completely out of touch with the American people. #UnmaskOurKids”
“Their smiles are still covered up!” Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY) agreed. “UNMASK OUR KIDS!”
The House Republicans tweeted from their official account as well, saying, “Really Haven’t seen one of those in years because of your authoritarian and unscientific mask mandate. UNMASK OUR KIDS NOW.”
“Are you effing kidding me? What smile? My daughter’s teachers have never seen her dimples,” Washington Examiner columnist and author Tim Carney added. “This is so perverse it has to be cruelty.”
Others referenced recent photos that showed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams maskless while she visited an elementary school as part of a Black History Month reading program.
Abrams later attempted to explain away the photos by saying that she had consulted with the school nurse and only removed her mask if everyone around her kept theirs in place — but even some of her biggest fans on ABC’s “The View” weren’t buying her excuses.
“It’s an unforced error. Why do that? Why give the right more ammunition? They always go after her anyway, and I think it was really hypocritical actually — her statement. First of all, this has nothing to do with black history month,” Sunny Hostin explained. “The point is she was not wearing a mask when she is one of those proponents of mask mandates, and she said, I think, in her statement, her people said that she asked to — she removed it — I’m sorry. She wore a mask to the school, but later removed it so she could be heard by students watching remotely, and for the photos on the condition that everyone around her was wearing masks. She should have worn a mask. That’s a lame excuse.”
— Rory Cooper (@rorycooper) February 16, 2022
Cardona’s tweet comes amid controversy in a number of states — such as New York, Illinois, and California among others — where Democratic Governors Kathy Hochul, J.B. Pritzker, and Gavin Newsom, respectively, set dates for rolling back their indoor mask mandates but left them in place for students attending school.
“This is deliberate and malicious trolling of parents who are fighting to free children’s faces,” The Heritage Foundation tweeted.
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