A Pandemic is not Political!

mask

While breezing through Facebook a couple of days ago I saw the meme again.  The top picture showed soldier storming Omaha Beach and was labeled “Americans, 1944”.  The bottom picture was mask-wearing man, cowering behind a couch.  His eyes are round with fright.  This one was labeled, “Americans, 2020”.  I didn’t spend much time on the comments, but the general idea was how much they hated the “snowflakes” for their fear-mongering over the “Communist Cold” in their transparent hopes to defeat Trump in the presidential election.

This is actually one of the milder ones I’ve seen, but for some reason it touched a nerve.

Two quick things.

First, over 140,000 Americans have died of what they call “The Chinese Cold” or “The Communist Cold” in the last six months. It hasn’t just been sick, old people, it has been healthy people, young people, children, marathon runners and pretty much any and every demographic imaginable.  So far there is no way for us to tell who will have bad symptoms and who will die.  And a lot of these 140,000 deaths might have been avoided if there was strong leadership in the US.

The second thing is that mask wearing people aren’t afraid and cowering.  Masks give a little protection against the virus, but the biggest thing a mask does is help someone who has it from spreading it farther.  So we wear masks not from fear, but out of compassion.

OK, a third thing – One of the big issues that we face as numbers rise is that hospitals can become overwhelmed.  When that happens, people start dying.  It occurred in New York City early, and the hospitals in Florida and Texas are now nearing capacity.  Unless something changes soon, we might see the scenario of NYC in the spring happen all over again in several other states. And as they say, an ounce of prevention…

A few details about Covid-19.  There is a long list of possible symptoms, from the typical flu-like symptoms of fever and a cough to more dramatic ones.  Loss of smell.  Skin issues. Heart issues. Organ failure.  Brain damage, cognitive issues and confusion.  Eye problems. Diarrhea. A person can seem normal one minute, and then have severe symptoms the next, including falling asleep and nobody is able to wake them. Some people, including young healthy people, have had strokes.

We do not know the long-term effects of Covid-19 yet. There has been some indication that it isn’t over when it is over, but may come back again.  And think of this: there are some viruses that stay with you for life.  If you had chickenpox as a child, you might get shingles as an adult (same virus).  Ever hear the term, “Herpes is forever”?  Herpes is a virus, as is HIV that causes AIDS.  Will someone who has Covid-19 today suddenly come up with some odd symptoms in 20 years?  Maybe not, but it can’t be ruled out.

So, it can be bad, and the more people have it, the worse it is, since it can easily overwhelm our healthcare system.  Trying to prevent the spread, keep as many people well and avoid as many deaths as possible is not hiding behind a couch, wide-eyed and scared silly, it is common sense.  When a hurricane is coming, we put boards over the windows and move to higher ground.  As with any preparation, preparing for the Covid-19 can work.

Have you looked at the numbers for most mainland European countries lately?  Even some of the early hot-spots have gone down to next to nothing.  Yesterday France had zero (0!) reported new cases.  Italy, which was hit hard early, has been hovering around 200 per day for a while.  The US?  About 60,000. OK, it has flared up in Spain again recently, but for the most part Europe has it under control, particularly when compared to the US.

Why is there such a big difference between here and there?

Because we in the US have made it a political issue, not a health emergency.

To be fair, it is a very one-sided political issue, and it begins and ends with Donald Trump.

OK, OK, I hate to name names, at least politically, in my blog.  I avoid it at all costs, unless I am saying something good about politicians on both sides of the aisle, as I recently did with George W Bush and Barack Obama.  But this is a case where names have to be named.

From the beginning he has denied the seriousness of the pandemic, belittled those who were trying to inform America about and has spread misinformation.  He actively blocked early assistance, to many states when they needed it most.  He has been on the attack from the beginning, not against the virus, but against those who were trying to stop its spread.  He even went so far as to cheer the assault-weapon carrying people who stormed the statehouse in Michigan.

And many in the Republican party have followed.

Not all, and some have stood out to try to solve the issue.  Ohio’s governor made a few good moves early, though it seems to have back-slid quite a bit since then.  People in his administration have contradicted him, including over the last week when he said that the Surgeon General (that he appointed) was against masks, while at almost the same time the Surgeon General, Jerome Adams, begged Fox News watchers to take the virus seriously and wear a mask.

And then there was the Chris Wallace interview on Fox News.  I read an opinion piece on CNN calling Chris Wallace one of the best journalists in the business today – not bad coming from the competition.  Chris Wallace often fact checked the president in real time.  Not that the president backed down, but I hope it opened some people’s eyes.

At the end of the interview, he still seemed to insist that he understood it better than any of the experts.

And the rank and file voters are still behind him, or more like where he was two months ago.  Every day I see attacks on the WHO, CDC and, the biggest devil, Dr. Fauci. And, of course, tons of memes about the virus being a political hoax created by the Democrats.

Which brings us back to the opening of this post.

Yes, let’s compare today to WW2. Think of all of the sacrifices that normal Americans made to combat the enemy.  The things they had to give up.  Everyone in the country put their lives on hold for four years as the soldiers fought and died.

We face an enemy that still may kill more Americans than the ones we faced in that great war unless we fight!

How do we fight?  And what sacrifices do we need to make? Listen to the experts, like doctors, nurses and immunologist.  Practice social distancing.  Only go out in large groups/gatherings when absolutely necessary.  Avoid crowded, indoor situations.  Wash your hands.  And wear a mask.  When compared to what your grandparents put up during WW2, is this really so hard?  Really? It is?

Be brave!  Chin up!  Fight by listening to the experts, like doctors, nurses and immunologist and we will win!

***

I hate, hate that we live in a world were a pandemic has become such a political touchstone, where experts are considered traitors and were reality stars are considered the best source of information, but it is the world we live in.  Stay safe.

This was the latest in my newer political rants and my fourth (or fifth) post about Covid-19

Here, for something lighter, watch this:

(Click here if you don’t see the video below)

34 thoughts on “A Pandemic is not Political!

  1. Pingback: A Pandemic is not Political! | A Fine Test You've Gotten Us Into!

  2. Resa

    Enjoyed the parody, thank you!
    Pretty good rant, all in all. I’m with you!
    I’m also grateful I live in Canada. We had a surge from 67 cases in Canada on July 1, to 573 cases yesterday. Averaging about 350 new cases a day this month. The issue is educating the young people, and every time we open up a new step, the count goes up.
    We are only on stage 2 in Toronto.
    Vancouver opened to stage 3, and now it’s spiking there.
    They were down to under 1% infection rate. Now they are almost at 2%.
    So happy the border is closed!
    OH… now it looks like trump is sending out his troops to invade all Dem cities.
    Some people up here are worried about a civil war in the USA!

    Liked by 1 person

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      Canada needs to look down here to see what opening too early looks like… I don’t think it will come to a civil war here, but there is a part of me that is preparing, just in case. In some ways Trump unified his party by bullying them, but as his total incompetence in a crisis is unavoidable, there are splits in his coalition. Ironically, one of the biggest voices against Trump is a group of Republicans, The Lincoln Project.
      Thanks about the parody! If I was a guitarist instead of a keyboardist, I might want a one-eyed guitar ;)

      Liked by 1 person

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      1. Resa

        Thank you for answering. I was hoping I had not offended you…. in some way.
        I’ve seen some of the Lincoln Project ads.
        I hope the best for all Americans. Your great country deserves better than trump.
        What are his followers thinking?

        Liked by 1 person

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  3. dawnkinster

    Good piece. I don’t see an end to this unless everyone buckles down. Which I don’t see happening. It may be an endless cycle until we get a vaccine, and who knows how that will go. It’s so discouraging. Personally, though I made a trip last week to visit a friend, I intend to stay close to home for the foreseeable future.

    Liked by 1 person

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      Thanks. Another one of those stepping outside of my comfort-zone posts ;) I’m very careful most of the time, but have made a few slips here and there. I do minimize my time indoors, like grocery shopping. The schools are what is scary, particularly since it is a top down forcing the schools to reopen, not a “We need to do all due diligence, check what we can do and get back to you”…

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      I do hope people actually open their eyes to what he says and does and, as you said, vote him out bigly…. Numbers are down in New England, but I have been wearing mine more because I go into stores more often as I catch up on everything.

      Liked by 1 person

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  4. Marilyn Armstrong

    I’ve reached a new stage of development. I know for whom I will vote. I’ve known since 2016 that whoever wasn’t Trump was getting my vote. Now I have a name to go with the intention. I don’t need anymore dirt or psychological analyses. I know he may not willingly leave the White House and has, as i mentioned a few weeks ago, managed to find at least one military branch to be his “secret police.” He a bad, dangerous, evil thing. I’m not even sure he’s human. If there really ARE demons, I think he is one of them. Maybe he’s the anti-Christ. Or both. But one way or the other, I have no remaining mind to make up. I’m sure whatever he’s doing is rotten because everything he has done is rotten. So if I ignore videos and anti-Orangeman rants, forgive me. I’ve given all I have to give, written my heart out and now I need a little bit of peace and mental quiet. I need an adult-sized time-out.

    Liked by 1 person

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      Yeah, I get it. I made up my mind long ago as well, and don’t always read or write these rants, but I have just been seeing so much to rant about recently, and not from Orangeman himself, but by all of those people who think he’s the second coming. I’ve written so little that is political, but I can’t sit by any more. Few of my posts will mention anyone by name, at least not like this one does. They will be aimed more at the issues. This, however, is a huge issue and names have to be named here. But I won’t be offended if you skip any of my rants, particularly the ones that mention he-who-shall-remain-nameless ;)

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      it has been bad everywhere, and a lot of political games every where. Luckily, it hasn’t been awful in my town, so common sense, telework, etc. has been easy, but with the political stupidity.. Oh well, and I know you’ve seen some political stupidity in the UK as well…

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  5. Nancy

    BRAVO! You have mirrored my thoughts exactly. There was a piece in the paper today comparing the spread of the virus in mask wearing areas to non-mask wearing areas and the researchers said they found a remarkable and obvious difference right away. How did such a simple, common sense germ prevention method become so controversial and political? I get so angry when I see how quickly other countries have recovered compared to the nonsense that is still going on in this country and, just like you said, it’s all because of the lack of good leadership at the top!

    Liked by 1 person

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      It is so odd because he does everything for appearances and how he perceives his base will see it. Uhm, doesn’t he want to be perceived as the person who saved the country? I guess he would rather be perceived as the one who does everything the most radical right wants…

      Liked by 1 person

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      It is so odd how, and why, he made it partisan issue. It never should have been! I know to Trump everything is about Trump, but wouldn’t he have looked better if he had done the right thing? Just odd…

      Liked by 1 person

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  6. robertawrites235681907

    This is very interesting, Trent. It seems that most countries have made a mess of things when it comes to C-19. The US death rate is high but if you look at it as a ration per 1 million people the European countries like the UK, Spain, Belgium and France are higher.

    Liked by 1 person

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      The big difference is that, except for Spain, these countries have gotten their infection rates under control while it is ballooning in the US. I read a few articles about the suggested numbers for reopening. Most European countries did follow the suggestions, but the US didn’t – we reopened too soon. And, OK, it has been politicized in other countries, in some “3rd world” countries as much or even more than the US. I don’t know if the leaders in other countries have so blatantly attacked the experts and refused to follow any guidelines. You are right that few knew what to do at first and it was a real mess, particularly in the beginning. It is still a big mess in a lot of places,but it seems that compared to other richer nations, the US is the one most headed in the wrong direction.

      Liked by 1 person

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        1. trentpmcd Post author

          Yes, there have been regional differences. A lot of it is cultural. Up in the northeast, where I live, most people wear masks and follow all of the guidelines, but in some places where there are new outbreaks, a lot of people still call it a hoax, even when their neighbors are getting it. And then Florida’s response has been just wrong… The problem is, from February a lot of people have been calling for a unified effort at the national level, but instead we’ve gotten confusion. An expert wills ay one thing, and then the president will turn around and say the exact opposite. The good news is that yesterday the president did admit that it is much worse than he had previously stated and that people should wear masks. A step in the right direction. He is still against federal help for testing, etc., but most in his party are pushing for it, which is good.

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        2. trentpmcd Post author

          And getting back to your original comment, reading comments from fellow bloggers, I think this has been politicized around the world far more than I knew, even though I read BBC and should get the British side. Of course the issue here is closer to home, our numbers have really exploded recently due to reopening too early and people on Facebook have just been awful, so that is were I’m going :)

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      It is scary times. The white supremacists have been emboldened, and there are other fringe groups that are out to cause violence. Hopefully things will calm down. One scary thought – we were having uprisings and things in the 90s and it looked scary, but it ended after the OKC bombing. I hope it doesn’t have to come to that, all of those innocent lost lives.

      Thanks.

      Liked by 1 person

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    1. trentpmcd Post author

      So I went to the link and the first thing that came up was a Trump ad ;) I think I get a Trump ad 90% of the time I go to youtube… Anyway, I can’t understand how anyone can a believe a word he says about anything. I have not heard one straight answer from him on even the most simple question. He is like that old Saturday Night character, the chronic liar.

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