The world itself is currently under a layer of fear, not unlike a thick, springtime fog. It’s heavy in the air, and every step further into it leaves you more uncomfortable than the last.
We, as a species, are fighting an invisible enemy called COVID-19, and the only tactic that we have at our disposable to starve the virus. We have no vaccine to attack it head on, and the treatments that have managed to show progress thus far haven’t been wholly replicable.
Yet, despite this all-consuming crusade that the human race has embarked on, some among us have chosen to either completely ignore the virus, or actually work to purposefully spread it.
The Department of Justice has now proclaimed that they consider COVID-19 a legitimate biological weapon, and the willful dissemination of the illness will land a person in a heaping pile of trouble.
People who intentionally spread the coronavirus could face criminal charges under federal terrorism laws, the Justice Department’s No. 2 official said Tuesday.
In a memo to top Justice Department leaders, law enforcement agency chiefs and U.S. Attorneys across the country, Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen said prosecutors and investigators could come across cases of “purposeful exposure and infection of others with COVID-19.”
“Because Coronavirus appears to meet the statutory definition of a ‘biological agent’… such acts potentially could implicate the Nation’s terrorism-related statutes,” Rosen wrote. “Threats or attempts to use COVID-19 as a weapon against Americans will not be tolerated.”
And that’s not all that the DOJ is going to be looking into.
The Justice Department has also set up a task force to address hoarding and price gouging related to supplies urgently needed for the fight against the virus.
Attorney General Bill Barr said during a briefing at the White House on Monday that hoarding of supplies like masks would be prosecuted. However, memos issued by Barr and Rosen on Tuesday said the Department of Health and Human Services has yet to formally designate the health-related items the administration wants covered by the Defense Production Act.
Serves them right, if you ask us.