Something that makes me angry is the lack of a national plan to deal with the pandemic. The first case arriving in the United States all the way back on January 20th. Yet even after all this time, the United States is disproportionally affected by the Coronavirus. As I am writing this the U.S. reached another daily high case count yesterday. The United States is rapidly approaching 250,000 deaths. We have had plenty of time to prepare, so what went wrong?
I think the problem is obvious, we have a President who reacted slowly at first praising China’s handling of the pandemic earlier this year. Then changing his stance once cases started showing up in the U.S. While he did shut down some travel from China early on this wasn’t a complete travel ban while certain people with special standing could still travel freely.
I’ve always thought comparing COVID-19 to the seasonal flu was not just untrue but dangerous. We knew early on that it was something different from the flu. The President in an interview with Bob Woodward admitted that the coronavirus was more deadly than the flu. Now granted I understand wanting to keep people calm during a crisis, but could you imagine how different things would be right now if Trump was just honest about it from the beginning. It’s like with masks, every other country in the world seems to agree that they are effective. However, in America, there is a huge divide on masks as if they infringe on individual rights. My thinking is that protecting other people from something that may seriously impact their life couldn’t be more patriotic.
I would have never thought that there would be a time when our medical experts are ignored. Take someone like Dr. Anthony Fauci who has been the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases since 1984. Fauci who has served under several presidents of both parties seems to have a good record and be nonpartisan. So why is President Trump attacking his credibility? I think it’s because Dr. Fauci has contradicted him several times. The President has made too many false claims to list them here, but I’ll just point out some of the most egregious lies. He said the virus was going to miraculously disappear once the temperature warmed up outside. One of his earlier goals was to open everything back up in time for Easter services. Finally, the most disturbing is how the President has repeatedly called the virus a hoax that would disappear after election day. Well it’s well past the election even though he is promoting baseless claims of voter fraud and saying it was a rigged election (big surprise I know).
Another glaring issue is that there is no national plan. Every state has different guidelines and regulations set in place to stop the spread of the virus. While cases are rising nationally, unsurprising to me we are seeing a huge spike in the Midwest. We are now just seeing some governors issue mask mandates. States that were touted for their handling of the virus earlier in the year are currently in big trouble. Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds issued a watered-down mask mandate that went into effect last Tuesday. In my opinion, it’s too little too late as the state just surpassed 200,000 cases and 2,000 deaths.
So where do we go next? Unfortunately, I think these next few months with both the coronavirus and the flu may be one of the most depressing times that we have gone through as a country. Due to weak policy decisions early on particularly the shortened shutdown that only lasted a few weeks. I understand that going into lockdown comes with its own issues, however, I think protecting people’s lives is much more crucial than being solely focused on the stock market.