A Facebook post by an anti-mask individual named Ben Barber has gone viral for putting a new twist on the “anti-masker gets COVID-19” story. Instead of learning his lesson and asking people to take the pandemic seriously and wear masks after contracting the virus and very nearly dying from the disease, he wrote that he will “stand by” his opinion that the whole thing is no big deal.

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This is on the same post as the one where he says he “almost sent my kids through life without a dad.”

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Along with a photo of himself with a breathing tube in his nose in a hospital bed, Barber says that he’s “really backed off my public stance on COVID recently” but wants to make “one more rant.”

“One week ago, I was rushed to the ER and then taken by ambulance to the University of Utah Respiratory ICU,” he wrote.

“My oxygen was so low that I almost died, almost went on life support and almost sent my kids through life without a dad.”

Because of this near-death experience, Barber wanted to log into Facebook to let his friends and family know that he hadn’t changed at all.

“Having almost died, I stand by my assertion that COVID is being blown out of proportion to serve a higher greed.”

“Masks are stupid and so is social distancing,” he concludes.

The photo and rant appear to either have been deleted or are not available to the public, but this didn’t stop it from going viral on Twitter. However, he has posted a number of videos and articles containing false coronavirus conspiracy theories, including one video claiming that “You Can’t Catch A Virus.”

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Other anti-maskers and coronavirus conspiracy theorists who have come down with COVID-19 and experienced severe, life-threatening symptoms have reversed course and started warning people to listen to scientists. Barber’s refusal to learn anything from his experience is currently flooring people across the internet.

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*First Published: September 2, 2020, 12:57 pm