A YouTuber and her friend are facing backlash after posting footage of a health scare at the newly reopened Disney World.
The YouTuber known as That Crazy Disney Lady streamed her Disney visit with a friend who she says experienced an allergic reaction.
In the stream, the woman experienced shortness of breath, elevated blood pressure, and "severe vomiting," ultimately ignoring a medic's advice to go to the hospital.
Commenters immediately wondered whether her symptoms were consistent with COVID-19, and several critics called the pair's behavior "irresponsible."
The YouTuber fired back at commenters, insisting that the incident was caused by an allergic reaction.
Video: 6 minutes of the coronavirus pandemic reviewed in 6 minutes
Two Disney World fanatics who livestreamed their trip to the Orlando, Florida, theme park's reopening over the weekend are receiving intense backlash for continuing to explore the park after one fell ill.
The YouTuber Tonya Blakey, known as That Crazy Disney Lady to her 9,500 subscribers, streamed over 10 hours of footage of her trip to the Magic Kingdom on Friday and Saturday. In the videos, she and a friend, Robin, wandered the grounds, rode Splash Mountain, and experienced a brief health scare.
At one point during the day, Blakey said Robin suffered an allergic reaction (previously, when Robin noted she was having trouble breathing, she inquired whether a brownie contained cashews) and visited a medic station. Ultimately, Robin decided against using an EpiPen to alleviate her symptoms and opted to take Benadryl instead. Her condition, however, soon worsened and she returned to the medic. In the stream, Blakey added that Robin's blood pressure was elevated and she was "violently vomiting" but was "being stubborn" and refused to go to the hospital.
Commenters swiftly questioned whether Robin's condition was something other than an allergic reaction, with some wondering whether she was experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. Blakey quickly shot back at her viewers and denied Robin was ill.
"If anybody else asks about Robin having COVID-19, you're going to be not in the group anymore," Blakey said, possibly referring to her private Facebook group that fellow Disney fans can request to join. "I've already clearly stated what was wrong with Robin. Robin would not be in this park if she had COVID-19."
Among the concerned viewers was the gamer Jenny Nicholson, who shared a clip of the women with her 157,000 followers on Twitter.
Nicholson listed Robin's apparent symptoms — "cough, shortness of breath, and severe vomiting" — and added that the two women returned to the park despite complaining of sore throats.
The original video was eventually removed after the tweet faced a copyright claim.
In a series of follow-up tweets, Nicholson went on to emphasize that Robin did not seek further medical attention, ignoring a medic's advice.
While she said she had no desire to subject the women to harassment, she thought their judgment was concerning.
"I'm sure they're nice ladies who think they're invincible and everything's good," she wrote. "But this is why theme parks shouldn't be open in a pandemic."
—Jenny Nicholson (@JennyENicholson) July 12, 2020
Disney's reopening amid the coronavirus pandemic has been controversial
In just two days, the video was viewed over 1 million times on Twitter. Thousands of Twitter users also retweeted the clip, calling the women's decision to continue visiting the park "entitled" and "selfish."
Comments on Blakey's YouTube channel have since been turned off.
Nicholson told Insider she decided to post the clip because the women ignored medical advice. "Obviously, there's no way of knowing what their symptoms actually indicate," she said. "Since they were told to go to the hospital, they should have seen about a test or maybe stayed back at the hotel."
Ultimately, Nicholson says she wanted to make a point about what visitors are risking when traveling to public attractions.
"I just wanted to point out: 'Hey, when the park is open, it's always going to be operating on the honor system. And this is part of why it's not safe to be there right now,'" she said.
Blakey, who caught wind of Nicholson's posts, urged her viewers to report the tweets. She also said she and Robin had sore throats only because they had been screaming on various rides (screaming on rides has been discouraged at some theme parks during the pandemic).
Despite Blakey's insistence that Robin had an allergic reaction and not a contagious illness, some commenters felt the women should have stayed away anyway.
"Even IF she isn't Covid sick, I don't want that ish. Stay the heck away from people when you're sick," one commenter wrote. "This is the behavior that keeps pandemics going."
Another added: "The commonly decent thing to do is 'stay away if you feel sick' NOT 'stay away if you wholeheartedly believe you don't have coronavirus.' She is not a doctor, she has no test, she is being irresponsible."
The park's reopening follows a surge in COVID-19 cases in Florida. On Saturday, the state's Department of Health reported 10,383 new positive cases among residents.
Blakey could not be reached for comment.
Read the original article on Insider