News & Politics

Actor Sean Penn Is Helping Set up Coronavirus Testing Sites in Los Angeles

Sean Penn (by Sachyn Mital via Wikipedia)

Actor Sean Penn joined Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti on Thursday to provide updates on the city’s coronavirus drive-thru testing sites. While some people might wonder why the actor was involved in the briefing, there actually was a good reason for it.

Penn, who played the stoner Jeff Spicoli in the ’80s classic film Fast Times at Ridgemont High, is the founder of Community Organized Relief Effort (CORE), which has been helping to set up the drive-thru sites.  There are currently five drive-thru sites in Los Angeles County, which have provided 12,000 coronavirus tests.

CORE, Penn’s nonprofit organization, was established in 2010 to help rebuild Haiti after the 2010 earthquake and has also helped areas in the United States following natural disasters, like hurricanes.

“This is a very unique situation for us,” Penn said. Even with “all the planning in the world,” the actor said the coronavirus pandemic created “too high a demand for any existing forces to handle if citizens don’t get involved.” Penn hopes to get CORE to scale up operations across the state and is working with Governor Newsom’s office to accomplish that.

I’m no fan of Sean Penn personally, but at least he’s stepping up to do good during the crisis. That’s more than what I can say about Barack Obama, whose only contribution seems to be criticizing President Trump. But hey, cheers to Sean Penn for his efforts.

Here’s one of my favorite scenes from Fast Times at Ridgemont High, because, why not?


Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis

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