A Kentucky lawmaker is facing backlash on Twitter after she posted a meme comparing Dr. Anthony Fauci to Jonestown leader Jim Jones.
Kentucky’s House Education Committee Chairwoman Rep. Regina Huff tweeted the image Tuesday. Under Jones, the cult leader who led hundreds in a mass suicide in 1978, it reads: “I persuaded over 900 people to drink my Koolaid.”
Under the picture of Fauci it reads: “Amateur.”
“Some will cavil, they will not be able to help themselves,” Huff, a republican, tweeted.
Louisville Courier Journal reporter education reporter Olivia Krauth took a screenshot of the tweet before Huff deleted it. Krauth then shared it on Twitter.
“Disgusting. This should be a fireable offense,” one person commented.
“This person has no business charing the education committee,” said another.
One man said he was concerned Huff’s comment would misrepresent Kentucky.
“If the Education chair wanted to appeal to her base, fine, but Twitter is global – businesses, families, & anyone else considering Kentucky sees this stuff. We need to stop electing those that damage the ‘optics’ of Kentucky. I do not care about party, I do care about KY,” he tweeted.
Huff told NBC News she tweeted the meme in reference to mask requirements in school, not in reference to vaccinations as Krauth said when she tweeted the screenshot. She said she did not create the meme.
She repeatedly said she shared the meme to communicate “we can’t be led by fear” after the largest district in the state expressed to her that they had concerns about having students return to school in the fall.
Huff said she wants “students to return to school with some type of normalcy,” saying they should be able to choose whether or not they wear masks, despite the American Academy of Pediatrics recommending this week that all children wear masks in school this fall.
She added that she deleted the tweet because people who were critical of her sharing the meme were using “language that was horrible in the comments and I didn’t want my name associated.”
The leadership of the Kentucky General Assembly’s House and Senate did not respond to requests for comment.