Joe Biden showed up at a construction site in Illinois last Thursday to explain what a terrific job he's been doing. Biden's poll numbers, you may have noticed, have declined recently, not just by a little bit, but by such a dramatic margin that some prominent Democrats are openly worried about it. The midterms are in a year.
So the point of last week's appearance outside Chicago was to remind all of us in the country that our perceptions of Biden's performance are silly and baseless. Actually, Joe Biden is a great president. He's totally aware of what's happening. He's completely on top of things. He knows exactly what he's doing and he's got your well-being at heart. Not the narrow economic interests of some soulless multinational corporation that hates America and your family. No, you! Because Joe Biden is awesome.
And to prove it. Biden talked at length about the COVID vaccine. His greatest achievement, he said. Now, strangely, Biden didn't say a lot about the vaccine itself. He did note that if you get the shot, you could not spread COVID to other people. And if there were doctors in the audience, they might have been confused because that is ridiculously and provably untrue. Of course, the vaccinated can spread COVID, and they do.
But Biden didn't pause and dwell on the science such as it is. Instead, Biden spent virtually his entire speech attacking any American who hasn't yet gotten the shot. Now you've heard him say that a lot, but it's worth taking a closer look at what Joe Biden said last week outside Chicago. Go, look it up for yourself. It's on the C-SPAN website.
As you watch it, ask yourself, has any president in our history ever talked about millions of American citizens like this? This is the way presidents talk about foreign enemies or dictators talk about enemies in their midst. It's not the way American presidents talk, or ever have. Ever, for any reason, under any circumstances. We can't think of a single example, even during the Civil War.
And yet, according to Joe Biden, unvaccinated Americans are the root of this country's problems. They're destroying our economy. They are killing our people. The unvaccinated, Biden said, are solely responsible for the outbreak of the Delta variant of COVID, the outbreak that has left tens of thousands of Americans dead.
Biden noted this to the morbidly obese governor of Illinois, J.B. Pritzker, who nodded from behind his mask as if all of this was settled science. And then Joe Biden kept going. The unvaccinated are dangerous, he announced. They are diseased. They're dirty. They are unpatriotic. They are selfish. They are pathogens in human form. They have caused this deadly virus to "spread to our children, to spread throughout society."
They suffer because of their absurdity and their self-inflicted suffering burdens the rest of us. They "overcrowd our hospitals" like a plague of swarming, gasping insects, they "overrun our emergency rooms and intensive care units." Americans. And as they lie, they're ventilated, dying, reaping the rewards of their own sin, these miscreants "leave no room for someone with a heart attack or in need of a cancer operation."
These people get no sympathy because they're barely people. The unvaccinated Biden told us. Die their much-deserved deaths, but even as they die, they burdened the rest of us. That's how horrible they are. They're subhuman they’re wreckers of a nation.
We're not overstating any of this, by the way. Go watch Biden's speech, it's online. The question is: once you've identified a diseased fifth column like this within the country that you run, What do you do with them? Biden got to that toward the end of his speech.
JOE BIDEN: These requirements work, and as the Business Roundtable, others told me when I announced the first requirement that encourage businesses to feel they could come in and demand the same thing of their employees. More people are getting vaccinated, more lives are being saved. Let's be clear: when you see headlines and reports of mass firings and hundreds of people losing their jobs, look at the bigger story. … Over the past week we've seen American, Southwest, Alaska, JetBlue Airlines all announce requirements.
Yeah, there have been mass firings, the president said. But when you see reports of mass firings of law-abiding American citizens, Joe Biden told us, what you're really seeing is progress. You should celebrate.
Think about that. No American president has ever made a statement like that, cheering the firing of law-abiding Americans in the multitudes. But Joe Biden did. He didn't even pause. He says things like that regularly. Now that's fine if you're on Joe Biden's side, apparently.
But what if Joe Biden was talking about you? What if he was talking about your livelihood, your career, the future of your family? How would you feel? We should consider that, because these are Americans he's talking about, and as we do consider that, think about what happened to air travel in America over the weekend.
Southwest Airlines, you may have read this, one of our biggest carriers all but shut down on Saturday and Sunday, the airline canceled thousands of flights. It threw the nation's famously efficient system of air travel into total chaos. It's stranded countless travelers in airports. Again, you saw it on the news.
The question is how did this happen? Well the official explanation came right away. It was bad weather on the eastern seaboard. There were thunderstorms. There were also unspecified issues with air traffic control and all of that together forced Southwest Airlines, alone among airlines, to cancel its flights.
That's what the company Southwest Airlines claimed. They claim that in a statement to us today, a long statement. It's what many media outlets have repeated uncritically for the past two days.
And yet we can tell you it is untrue. All of that is a lie. It's not what happened. We've spoken to several people with direct knowledge of what actually did happen. We can tell you that the shutdown of Southwest Airlines over the weekend was a direct consequence - it was a reaction to - Joe Biden's vaccine mandates.
It began last week when Gary Kelly who is a CEO of Southwest, sent an internal memo to his employees declaring that, per Joe Biden's directive, any Southwest employee who was not fully vaccinated by the 8th of December will be fired. Canned. Done, right before Christmas.
Now, this would include not simply pilots on Southwest and flight attendants, of course, but ramp workers, mechanics, dispatchers, schedulers, ticket agents, people from the top to the very bottom. Many thousands of people.
Now, some unknown but apparently large number of these people have still not been vaccinated. Why is that? Well, many of them have already recovered from COVID. They have antibodies that offer them greater protection than any vaccine ever could. That's the science. So they don't want the vaccine.
Others have sincere religious objections. They object to the use of aborted fetal tissue in the development of pharmaceuticals. So they don't want it. They believe it violates their faith. Still, others have friends or co-workers or relatives who have suffered severe side effects from the vaccine, and therefore they are afraid to take it. That makes sense. Don't make fun of them. That's real.
And yet others are taking a stand purely on principle. They believe that in a free country, politicians should never be allowed to force citizens to submit to medical treatment they don't want. These are Americans who grew up in a country where that fact was taken for granted, everybody assumed it, and they want to preserve that country for their children. That's their motive.
But whatever their various reasons, the unvaccinated employees of Southwest Airlines, the many of them, are decent, high functioning Americans, and they have watched as their own government has dismissed them out of hand as criminals for reasons that don't even make sense.
Consider the argument they're hearing from Joe Biden: You must get the shot for the sake of people who've already gotten the shot because the shots don't work well enough to protect the people who've already gotten them. That's what Joe Biden and the entire American health establishment is telling them. So imagine making that argument to an airline pilot, someone whose entire job is based on logic. It is utterly bewildering to them, because it doesn't make sense. It's just too unreasonable.
"I've flown military jets in three different war zones," one pilot told us this weekend. "I have never lost sleep like this. The stress is beyond belief. It's dangerous." People are melting.
So this weekend in protest, a large number of southwest pilots called out sick and they effectively shut down their airline. And many of them, you should know, admire the company they work for. They love Southwest Airlines, but they felt they had no choice but to do this. Nobody was standing up for them, not the United States Congress, which, by the way, has exempted itself from vaccine mandates, not even their labor union, which exists and is paid to defend them. But they're not.
So in desperation, the pilots committed the most basic act of nonviolent civil disobedience, something we used to celebrate in this country. They stayed home. Now, at the same moment, they decided to do this, a large group of air traffic controllers apparently reached the very same conclusion. An estimated 6,000 federal air traffic controllers have not yet received the Biden mandated shot. That's nearly half of all air traffic controllers in this country. And they all, as federal employees, have until next month to submit or they will be fired. And when they are fired, our air traffic control system, which is already dangerously short-staffed, ask anyone who works in it, will stop. It will cease completely just in time for the holidays.
Now, once again, the controllers union has been no help to them. And once again, the media have aligned with the Biden White House to vilify them, not as people who are being persecuted as a matter of conscience, but as criminals. So on Friday, apparently, they took action. The air traffic control headquarters in Jacksonville, Florida, known to all pilots as Jacksonville Center, shut down. This never happens. It didn't even happen when there was a fire in a Chicago air traffic control center. They managed to keep air traffic control going.
But this weekend, Jacksonville Center shut down because there was simply no one to man it. There was no one there. The effects of this were profound, and they were immediate. Jacksonville Center controls the airspace in this country from Orlando to Raleigh, North Carolina, as well as far out over the Atlantic Ocean. That's some of the most crowded air routes in the world.
Air traffic controllers in Atlanta watched as planes headed for South Florida, rerouted west, and wound up over the Mississippi River. That would be the world's longest detour. And for a moment, in the chaos, it became clear that Joe Biden is not the only person in this country who has power. It turns out there is a limit to how far you can push some Americans.
So in that way, it might have been cast as an inspiring story - man against the machine. But the media had no interest in telling that story. In fact, some on the corporate left suggested the Southwest pilots had somehow committed what is known as an illegal job action. Illegally not showing up for work, as if politicians have a right to force Americans to labor against their will.
Now, some of us had assumed that was a condition we would recognize as the textbook definition of slavery. But no, it's illegal not to work, they told us. And then at least one outlet describe what the pilots had done as "domestic terrorism." Get to work immediately wage earner or you're al Qaeda.
There were more cancellations at Southwest Airlines today, no doubt there will be more to come and not just of airline flights. At least two Amtrak train routes in the Northeast were canceled over the weekend and, so was a regularly scheduled car ferry in Washington state out to the San Juan Islands. In all cases, the employees in question, who have been told to get the shot, did not show up.
Were these also protests against the Biden shot mandates? We can't say for certain. It certainly wouldn't surprise us, because that's our future. Thousands and thousands of Americans, the best among us in many cases, will be stripped of their livelihoods, of their lives by the Biden White House's mandates.
This is not a small thing. As of tonight, more than 50,000 U.S. Marines still have not received the shot, as well as a large percentage of the Navy SEAL teams. What will happen when these people are gone from the force? Who's going to protect this country? Who's going to protect our cities?
In Seattle, to name just one example, the city is moving forward toward firing fully 40 percent of the entire police force over the Biden shot mandates. Good luck getting your emergency calls answered after that, and so on.
Our hospitals, our schools, our national labs, scientists and researchers at Oak Ridge and Los Alamos, among others. All torn apart by a purge overseen by Susan Rice that has nothing whatsoever to do with public health and everything to do with the accumulation of political power.
That is happening right now. Make no mistake, it will continue to happen unless good people work immediately to stop it.
This article is adapted from Tucker Carlson's opening commentary on the October 11, 2021 edition of "Tucker Carlson Tonight."