Coronavirus: Evangeline Lilly Faces Backlash for Refusing to Self-Quarantine Amid Pandemic Guidelines

Evangeline Lilly is taking serious heat for revealing she and her family are forgoing health officials' warning to social distance amid the coronavirus pandemic, saying on social media they "value freedom over their lives." The Lost actress is being called "socially irresponsible" after sharing a photo of her "morning tea" and revealing she had dropped her kids off at gymnastics camp that day.

"They all washed their hands before going in," she added in the caption. "They are playing and laughing." When one follower asked, "No Corona House Arrest???" the Ant-Man actress answered, "Not for this family," which led to an in-depth discussion in the comments section about her putting the public in danger due to her desire to keep things, as she said, "business as usual."

"Oh that's disappointing," one person responded. "Social distancing is the only way to protect the most vulnerable. We are all in this together."

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Lilly was quick to reply to that comment with an even more shocking bit of information about her situation, writing, "I am living with my father at the moment, who has stage four [leukemia]. I am also immune compromised at the moment. I have two young kids. Some people value their lives over freedom, some people value freedom over their lives. We all make our choices. With love and respect."

The original commenter responded, "Respectfully, it is not just your lives you have to be concerned with. Your children can unknowingly pass the virus to others who can die. It's not your place to make life and death choices for other people. ...Continuing to send children out to socialize is socially irresponsible."

Revealing themselves to be a libertarian, the commenter added, "The reason freedoms will continue to be taken is because individuals are thinking only of themselves and their lives and not of others. My entire world view is based on the belief that people are good and will do the right thing without being told by the state. I am being proved wrong over and over again during this crisis."

Lilly wrote back that while she had "similar views" as her critic, in her view, "Where we are right now feels a lot too close to [Martial] Law for my comfort already, all in the name of a respiratory flu. It’s unnerving."

"I appreciate your engagement and the meaningful discourse. Let’s be vigilant right now," she continued. "And kind. Watchful and gracious - keeping a close eye on our leaders, making sure they don’t abuse this moment to steal away more freedoms and grab more power, but gracious with each other as we try to navigate the unknown dangers of a modern, global world and power structure. Stay in touch. We’re in this together. Thank you for listening. I have heard you."

Her response didn't strike many as inspiring, with Saturday Night Live alum Casey Rose Wilson commenting, "You are both selfish and deranged."

Another user wrote, "The IGNORANCE is astounding. You know, carriers with no symptoms do exist."

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As of Thursday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported 10,442 cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) in the U.S. and 150 deaths attributed to the illness.

Photo credit: Rich Fury / Stringer / Getty