How a Hair Appointment Caused a Scandal | Cami Dominguez
If things couldn’t get any weirder in 2020, Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi has put herself in an incriminating position that she can’t speak her way out of — a hair blowout. On the 31st of August, Fox News came out with some liberal-crushing news: video footage showing Pelosi breaking San Francisco’s COVID-19 safety precaution regulations.
The footage in question displays Pelosi walking through two small rooms in the San Francisco E-Salon after having her hair washed. The catch? Her mask was around her neck.
Salon owner Erica Kious broke her side of the story in an interview with Tucker Carlson claiming that she had no knowledge of Pelosi’s visit until the night beforehand, but she was unable to do anything as the stylists are independent, giving them full control over appointments.
However, the situation quickly turned into something that is often seen in mainstream scandal cases: the classic “he said, she said” situation. The stylist who scheduled Pelosi’s appointment, Jonathan DeNardo, alleged that Kious approved the appointment during a phone call. Siding with Pelosi, he continues, “Ms. Kious took a special interest in the appointment during the telephone call, wherein she made several vitriolic and incendiary comments about Speaker Pelosi.” This implies therein that Kious might have set her up, given her political leanings.
All of this occurred after the Speaker of the House herself, Pelosi, came out with a statement asserting that she was wearing a mask during the entirety of her appointment, other than when her hair was washed, defending her situation by saying, “I just had my hair washed. I don’t wear a mask when I’m washing my hair? Do you wear a mask when you’re washing your hair?” Pelosi, among other Democrats, has been an advocate for wearing masks and encourages the usage of them, leading her to believe this was all a setup to make her look hypocritical.
Well, mission accomplished. Republicans have been pointing fingers at the Democrats ever since the news broke out. The interview with Carlson and a separate statement made by Kious is what fueled the fire. Realizing that she was catching the eyes of many, Kious stated, “If she’s in there comfortably without a mask and feeling safe, then why are we shut down?” The salon has been under fire for the past few days with Kious receiving an influx of bad reviews on her yelp page and death threats being sent to her personally.
Looking at San Francisco’s COVID-19 restrictions, salons weren’t able to operate until September 1st, and given the date of Pelosi’s appointment (August 31st), it was one day shy. Furthermore, the Bay Area’s hair salons can only operate outdoors and certain procedures such as shampooing, coloring, and other chemical treatments still aren’t allowed.
This wouldn’t be a classic, modern U.S politics debacle if President Trump didn’t put in his two cents. He quickly jumped on Twitter and mocked Pelosi’s “set up” statement, criticizing how she had the salon improperly opened.
Republican and Democrat sentiment clashed as it tends to do nowadays. Republicans pose the argument that Democrats are implementing rules which they cannot even follow. Pelosi is not the only Democrat who has been seen breaking their own implementations, as California Governor Gavin Newson also faced a bit of backlash after closing down Central Valley counties and coincidentally leaving his winery open in Madera County, and even Mayor Bill De Blasio of New York, who encouraged New Yorkers to social-distance while he himself was going to the gym.
Though Republicans make a valid point, Democrats refute the claims by saying that despite Pelosi’s ignorant act, Republicans are using it as a diversion to how poorly the Trump administration has been handling the pandemic. With more than 184,000 American lives taken by COVID-19, Democrats call out the hypocrisy of Republicans by bringing up that Republicans have wanted the economy to reopen, and when Ted Cruz got a haircut at a Texas salon, Trump even praised the salon.
Both Democrats and Republicans have the right to be upset at each other’s hypocrisy and faults. Nevertheless, seemingly small situations such as this one continue to be blown out of proportion to make headline news, constantly redirecting the people’s attention from pressing issues to strengthen tensions between the people and their own government.