Stephen Colbert on spring breakers slowing pandemic progress

Spring break crowds in Miami Beach (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)
Spring break crowds in Miami Beach (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images) /

Over the past few months, there has been progress towards a return to normal from the novel coronavirus pandemic. But as Stephen Colbert explained, we could be taking a step back as infection rates rise while thousands of tourists pack Florida for spring break.

The vaccine rollout has helped reopen parts of the country and encouraged leaders to curb restrictions on social gatherings. It was President Joe Biden who promised to have vaccines available to all American adults by May 1 with the goal of getting close to normal by July 4.

But it appears that nobody was quite prepared for spring break. Thousands of tourists have arrived in Florida, crowding bars and beaches. In Miami Beach, maskless crowds filled the streets and forced the city to declare a state of emergency.

Stephen Colbert’s monologue on Tuesday night expressed his disappointment with the situation and what it could mean for the progress we’ve made. Colbert masked his take in satire as he appeared to be on the side of spring breakers:

Stephen Colbert isn’t sure what Miami Beach expected to happen but the Late Show host isn’t surprised that college kids didn’t follow an 8 p.m. curfew. A spring break that wasn’t chaotic or disorderly was never going to happen, says Colbert.

Yet that doesn’t mean that Colbert condones maskless spring break parties even if he understands young people wanting to have fun. It was just recently that Colbert lumped spring breakers in with the 49 percent of Republican men who say they won’t get vaccinated, mocking both groups.

We’ll have to wait to see what effect these spring break crowds have on infection rates. The warmer weather is enticing more people to get together but Colbert’s message seems to be that we didn’t come this far to only come this far. And if the return to normal takes even longer, The Late Show is keeping track of who was and wasn’t following the guidelines.

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