The United States of America and their Denial
In exactly 10 days it will have officially been 6 months into 2020 and approximately 4 months into the pandemic.
And yet the United States of America, being one the countries with the highest death rate (tenth in the world to be exact) with 1.52 million confirmed cases and 89, 932 deaths. And their government still can't seem to get a grip on the fact that this is happening to them.
When The COVID-19 pandemic spread to the United States on January 19, 2020, They seemed to have it under control seeing as Trump had just wired about 3 trillion dollars for their economy, declared a public health emergency and repeatedly promised the citizens and the media that the virus was under control. He was optimistic and was “cheer-leading” the country. But the question remains, Was it to keep the people calm? or was it because he refuses to believe that the most powerful country in the world and its economy could be seriously damaged by a virus from china?
“We have the greatest economy in the history of the world... Better than China, better than any place,” he said.
That was until, He and the rest of the government saw it for themselves when the number cases in all 50 states had increased dramatically, and thus declared the official lockdown on March 31 except, American Samoa.
By the end of the month over 1 million people had been tested and trump's administration had waited until mid-march to purchase the medical equipment needed for these tests and in late march resulting in a shortage of test supplies for the health inspectors who surveyed at hospitals.
By early May, The US had conducted over 6.5 million tests, 250,000 tests a day and it was still not enough to contain the outbreak, considering he is president hopefully, Trump knew about this while he gave an upbeat assessment of the chances of developing a vaccine for COVID-19 by the end of 2020, maybe before.
Meanwhile throughout the country began a huge shortage of hand sanitizers and Anti -disinfectants and Masks.
And What were President trump’s suggestions? Scarves make a good double for masks, and more popularly, injecting disinfectants, and bringing UV light 'inside the body' .
"The virus dies the quickest in direct sunlight. Isopropyl alcohol will kill the virus in 30 seconds" he said to the white house reporters during his daily briefing on the COVID-19 situation in the country.
Along with several other statements and conversations with the undersecretary of homeland security for science and technology Bill Bryan, who strongly advised the people not to listen to trump's “dangerous advice”.
Trump also raises the possibility of using light to combat COVID-19.
“So supposing we hit the body with a tremendous, whether it’s ultraviolet or just very powerful, light — and I think you said that hasn’t been checked but you’re going to test it — and then I said suppose you brought the light inside the body, which you can do either through the skin or in some other way. And I think you said going to test that, too. Sounds interesting “ He said to Bryan
Trump's ridiculous remarks and suggestions made him an easy target for serious criticism from health experts who warned people and about this as it is highly toxic and a person could potentially die from consuming those chemicals. So much for vaccines and curing.
Moreover, during a press conference late on April 23, Mr. Trump turned to government scientists in the room and asked them about the role of disinfectants in killing the coronavirus, to which he responded "I was asking a question sarcastically to reporters like you, just to see what would happen," After several confident statements, claiming to have seen it work himself and conversations with homeland security.
And as for the American economy, the chairman of the Federal Reserve says the US economy could "easily" contract by 20-30% amid the pandemic.
Jerome Powell added in a CBS interview that the economic downturn might last until late 2021, and a full rebound may not happen until a vaccine is found, however, He was confident that the economy would recover, he said he believed the US could avoid a depression - and sustained economic downturn - because the financial system itself was healthy, and the coronavirus pandemic was "an outside event" the economy could recover from.
But recover from what exactly?
More than 26 million Americans have filed for unemployment in the past five weeks - over 15% of the US workforce.
And small businesses have been hit hard too - a $349b dollar loan program ran out of money within two weeks and the statistics don't seem to be improving because so far the American government has planned for when a vaccine is found and when the pandemic is over, and have done nothing about these pressing matters. They take no responsibility for their late action and overconfidence, Thus their energy goes into blaming China and WHO for the deaths of their citizens and the hits their economy has to take.
"The WHO failed to adequately obtain, vet, and share information in a timely and transparent fashion" Trump claims.
While the actual fact of the matter is WHO was the organization that received information from China about COVID-19 when a cluster of pneumonia cases was confirmed in Wuhan, Hubei province, and sharing it with medical and scientific experts from around the globe including the US.
And this of course did not matter because in trump's words "The WHO is funded largely by the United States, yet is very China-centric. which is true as the US is one of the biggest contributors to WHO and they did publically praise China's response to the coronavirus as a " commitment to transparency" But we cannot deny the fact that if they hadn't, this pandemic could be a lot worse unless we are President Donald Trump.
On Saturday, May 16, Obama had slammed President Trump for failing to handle the coronavirus pandemic properly, accusing Trump administration of not "even pretending" to be in charge in the nation's fight against COVID-19 and raising the wrong questions, When trump told reporters arriving at the white house that Obama was "an incompetent president, a grossly incompetent president".
Now, We cannot forget that President Trump is the leader of US, and considering recent events it's safe to say that Trump is only now getting a grasp on the fact that COVID -19 is the real deal that it can cause damage to the economy and the people, that times are going to get harder because the vaccine is not going to be developed anytime soon, However, he does not intend to keep it that way.
Anti-lockdown protests taking place around the United States could potentially spread the coronavirus as people are traveling to them far and areas not relatively unaffected by the epidemic, according to an analysis of data gleaned from location tracking of cellphones of the protestors.
But the analysis, which was reported first by “The Guardian news publication”, does not directly link the protests to new infections or surges. It only flags the possibility of these protestors carrying back the virus from high-infection areas.
And President Donald Trump has backed these protests as he continues to press states to reopen, allowing businesses to resume operations, and let people return to work, arguing the lockdown may be causing more damage to the country than the epidemic. His eyes, here, are on his re-elections prospects in the face record of unemployment and a severe downturn.
The White House has yet again sought to shift the blame, mostly on to China, through increasing public attacks and on the WHO and, internally, its own federal agencies.
“Early on in this virus, the CDC, which really had the most trusted brand around the world in this space, really let the country down with the testing because not only did they keep the testing within the bureaucracy, they had a bad test. And that did set us back,” he told NBC news.
The number of US fatalities from Covid-19 went up by 808 over the past 24 hours to 89,567 and reported infections went up by 18,937 to 1.48 million.
By: Mehek Chhabra