US President Donald Trump
US President Donald Trump
Photo: AFP

We live in a strange era -- where people voluntarily drink bleach and politicians speculate on the medical possibility of using disinfectants to internally cleanse human beings.

According to an NBC New York report, calls to New York City's Poison Control Center for incidents related to exposure to certain household chemicals has more than doubled in the short while since President Trumps recent comments.

Reportedly, in the 18 hours that followed his briefing, the department got 30 calls regarding this issue. Of these, the report adds, nine pertained to Lysol, 10 were about bleach and 11 were about other household cleaners. If one looks at the same time frame from a year ago, there had been 13 calls. Reportedly, none of the people involved in the 30 calls have died or been hospitalised.

For the uninitiated, people went ballistic on Friday after it was reported that President Donald Trump had suggested people use disinfectants to ward of the novel coronavirus.

"...@realDonaldTrump urged Americans to inject themselves with disinfectant," said one Left wing leader on Twitter.

"Trump downplayed the virus then called for rebellion then told people to drink bleach, maybe it's time to stop taking his press conferences live," tweeted the former chief speechwriter to the US Attorney General.

Now, to be fair, the President hadn't exactly called for bleach drinking. If one looks at the White House transcripts Trump had wondered if there was a way "we can do something like that, by injection inside or almost a cleaning".

"Because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs. So it would be interesting to check that. So, that, you’re going to have to use medical doctors with. But it sounds — it sounds interesting to me," he had said.

Responding to a follow-up question Trump had added that it "wouldn’t be through injection".

"We’re talking about through almost a cleaning, sterilization of an area. Maybe it works, maybe it doesn’t work. But it certainly has a big effect if it’s on a stationary object," he added.

But as with all cases, people are often likely to take you seriously. While the President has later brushed the comments aside as being sarcastic, that does not seem to have done a lot to assuage people looking for any solution whatsoever to be free of the virus.

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