When Florida’s new surgeon general met with a state senator this week, he was seeking her vote for his confirmation. She ended up ejecting him from her office. Joseph Ladapo, an erstwhile proponent of hydroxychloroquine appointed by Gov. Ron DeSantis, refused to cover his face at Tina Polsky’s request. Polsky was diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer in August and is slated to start radiation next week, so Ladapo’s refusal made her “really uncomfortable,” she said.
The surgeon general has questioned the efficacy of coronavirus vaccines. When Polsky asked Ladapo whether there was a reason he couldn’t wear a mask, “He just smiles and doesn’t answer. He’s very smug,” she said. “And I told him several times, ‘I have this very serious medical condition.’ And he said, ‘That’s OK,’ like it basically has nothing to do with what we are talking about.” Polsky asked that Ladapo leave, and he agreed. According to his own office, he said as he walked out, “Sometimes I try to reason with unreasonable people for fun.”