As social distancing and self-isolation have altered most countries, industries, and aspects of life, there remain those in the spotlight for flouting the concepts by choice. Trevor Noah has taken on the Florida spring breakers, while Evangeline Lilly has been defending her “#businessasusual” approach on Instagram as her followers take her to task in the comments.
One new addition is Carmela Hontou, the Uruguayan fashion designer and socialite who, according to The Guardian, could face legal charges for her decision to attend a 500-person wedding in Montevideo on March 7. She had just arrived from Spain, which currently has the world’s fourth-largest COVID-19 outbreak. Of the guests from that wedding, 44 have now tested positive for the virus, making up nearly half of Uruguay’s 79 cases.
Defending her decision in an interview with Argentina’s Infobae, Hontou said she had lunch with her 84-year-old mother the day of the wedding and went to another lunch the next day “where there were also a lot of people.” When she was asked whether attending had been unwise, she said, “That’s ridiculous! Plus, do you know how many people came on that plane?”
Like many other countries, Uruguay has instituted some mandatory measures, as The Guardian points out: suspended classes, closed shopping malls, suspended arriving flights from the U.S. and Europe. It hasn’t imposed a national quarantine, but its doctors union has called for one.
Hontou also said that she’d been worried about a fever during a previous trip to Madrid in January, but that the doctor she spoke to didn’t pay attention when she mentioned coronavirus. By February, she said, she was wearing a face mask when she landed in Madrid on another trip. She was surprised at the outcry about her wedding attendance, saying, “They are saying I’m a terrorist who brought the virus to kill everyone.”
Some of the ire likely has to do with how easy it is to avoid going to (or holding) a wedding right now, while the global spread of coronavirus has meant that some have effectively been forced into exposure. Motherboard reported on Thursday that two Manhattan Whole Foods employees had tested positive, and The Atlantic reported on Wednesday that an Amazon warehouse worker in Queens had contracted the virus.
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