Trump’s Phony (and Dangerous) War on Coronavirus

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Are you safe from coronavirus? We’d like to think so. We’re the largest most advanced economy in the world and Capitalism is supposed to be our protector. But guess what? Guys who think that they have so much money they can’t be touched by a virus or any other problem of mainstream America now run the country. And their leader is Trump. Let’s look at the facts.

No less legitimate news source than the Washington Post has said that the administration’s efforts have been at best “slapdash and misleading.” Let’s examine what is at stake. The kill rate of this virus is about 2%. But if you are over say, 70, and you have any respiratory problems, your chances go up. If you have young children, their chances are higher than normal. Anyone undergoing treatment for major medical problems, cancer, liver disease, extreme diabetes…all these things raise your odds. If your odds are one in twenty of dying, would you live with that? I don’t think so.

So, the point of the people from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, like Dr. Anthony Fauci is that we must be prepared. If we can stop the virus at the borders, fine. If we cannot, we need to do everything possible to contain it, isolate it, and let it recede, which it will with enough time.

The President has appointed Mike Pence as the leader of the task force to quell the virus before it gets started. That hardly creates any sense of security among Americans who know his background. During the HIV crisis when young men and then all kinds of people were dying of the disease, Mike Pence first seemed to ignore the problem for a couple of months. (That would be fatal in the case of coronavirus.) Then he said he would pray about it. Finally, he agreed with the Center for Disease Control (and many others) who said give individuals clean needles to handle their drug problems, which they are going to use anyway—but were sharing needles that infected others. But by then, many had died needlessly.

This situation is potentially much worse. If Pence bows down to some Trump demand to low-key the facts, we could have an epidemic like that in China. We need the truth out. We need it spread to spread exponentially faster than the virus to the medical and public health professionals and from them—immediately—to the people. Trump has lied so many times and Pence has backed him up so many times that the lives of probably 15,000 to 30,000 Americans will rely on the diligence and the observance of Democratic lawmakers, health professionals, newspaper editors and dedicated public servants to make sure that Trump sticks with the truth this time.

This is the nightmare with Trump we’ve all worried about. What if one time he lies about something incredibly important? Well, this is that time and we must be sure that he is not simply protecting his corporate CEO buddies or his pals like the billionaire Koch or the billionaire Mercer, who want to take your Medicare and Medicaid from you anyway.

There are only about 60 cases in the country that we know of right now. It has not hit here yet. But it obviously spreads like wildfire and if you are aged or infirm, your chances of dying are pretty high. It’s not a chance of being out of action for a few days. It’s dying. Death. Six feet under.

So you need to do something. We need to act to stop this thing now. We need to contact our Senators (www.senate.gov/contact. That is the list of Senators, with phone numbers and web sites, starting with Lamar Alexander and running through all of them.) We need to contact the House of Representatives member for our district (For the House it is: www.house.gov/representatives. That will put you right into the list which is done alphabetically by state and then numerically by district. Alabama, district 1, 2, 3, etc. Phone numbers and web sites are there.)

Why should you do this? Why do you need to contact your national representatives? Here’s one small example, in addition to Trump’s pushing Mike Pence…exactly the wrong guy…into the lead on this. Trump has known about our need to get ready for about three months. Trump only reacted when the stock market began to collapse because the entire Chinese economy is in a huge recession from people having to be quarantined. As a result, everyone in a responsible position in health says we are unprepared. We will, eventually, have 60,000 test kits ready. Thus far, we have had to scramble to test 3600 people. Only sixty known or potential U.S. cases and yet one person has already died.

After the First World War, a weakened world succumbed to influenza, a serious virus for which the world was not prepared. Fifty million people died. Viruses like the coronavirus, more serious, must be contained to as few people as possible because, like 1918, we have no way to know where it will end. The way to do it, according to one of the world’s great experts, Dr. Anthony Fauci, is to isolate the virus, keep it isolated to as few people as possible until it dies from lack of hosts.

You are a host. It wants to get at you right now. Don’t let it. Make sure you call your national representative and then your local representatives, and tell them that you’re too young to die. Tell them that you believe the experts that say you can never start too early or prepare too much to stop a killer virus.