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"I don’t think we need to attach a face, a personality, or what somebody was sending on their social media to be able to identify an active shooter," he said.
"An active shooter is anything that is continuing to kill people, and our brothers and sisters and fathers and daughters and sons. This is — this virus is the active shooter, and if we were — I think that if we could wrap our head around it in that way and understand that it’s principally putting in the radical people of color, elderly people, indigenous people, but randomly selecting all of us, that we need to huddle around and make very clear decisions on how to approach this thing."
Penn's appearance came as he worked to set up free COVID-19 testing in California.
He added that while he understood concerns about the economy, he got "very concerned when the attitude is without caution or without respect of those dead, dying, the hospital workers, and the science of this. This is a continuing problem, and it seems there’s just too much distraction."
Penn also took issue with White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany saying that it was "nonsensical" to demand everyone in the United States get tested for the virus.
"I think the problem is that people are speaking without any knowledge of what they’re speaking of. This testing should be thought of, again, in a very, very basic way, in this kind of active shooter way of looking at it," he said.
"This is a weapon that can get into any neighborhood, it get into any school, get into any, as we know, any retirement home, elderly care home, and out the street and in the market. So of course, we have to test if the idea is that human life cares — matters, and those kinds of comments I think are, they'll normalize a disconnect between who we are, and who we want to be as a country and as a people."