Thoughts & Musings for Wednesday, September 23, 2020
As expected, the United States of America – “the greatest nation on Earth” – has reached and surpassed the 200,000 COVID-19 deaths mark this week. Per the COVID-19 Dashboard by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE) at Johns Hopkins University, 200,893 men, women, and children of every race, ethnic group, social ranking, sexual orientation, and religious affiliation have died in this country as a result of the global pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus that emerged late last year in China and reached North America in early 2020.
Globally, we are well on track to reach the 1-milliion COVID-19 deaths mark; as of 10:23 AM Eastern, there are 31,666,012 known cases and 972,100 deaths worldwide.. I emphasize the word “known” because the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, aka North Korea, claims it has 0 COVID-19 infections or deaths. That’s bull excrement, of course, but that’s what Donald Trump’s bosom buddy Kim Jung Un is saying. Thus, the COVID-19 Dashboard’s figures seem to be an undercount rather than an overcount of cases/deaths.
In the U.S. – which Trump supporters insist is led by the “best President ever” – we have 6,899,272 COVID-19 cases and 200,893 deaths.
There is no denying the U.S. government’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis has been abysmal, and the buck, as President Harry S Truman famously said in the 1940s, stops at the Resolute desk in the Oval Office, which is currently being used by a con man named Donald J. Trump. Those 200,893 deaths – and those yet to come – occurred under his watch, and although not every fatality would have been prevented by a more mature, responsible, and proactive Commander in Chief, his deliberate politicizing of the pandemic – he called it “the Democrats’ new hoax” – and his even worse decision to downplay it in his public utterances on TV and at his “love me” rallies are only a small part of why we are where we are in this global pandemic.
And yet, his supporters still stand by Trump, no matter how awful the news about COVID-19 are or how well other nations with better, smarter leaders, such as Germany’s Angela Merkel and New Zealand’s Jacinda Ardern, have dealt with the.pandemic. Many countries – even former hotspot Italy – have done a bang-up job with their handling of the pandemic; however, the U.S. continues to flail about because its populace is politically and ideologically divided, and its President eggs on the divisiveness instead of using what Theodore Roosevelt called the bully pulpit of his elected office.
Not only does Donald Trump downplay the effects of the virus or tries to pin the blame on others – Cult 45 members often attack New York Governor Andrew Cuomo for his alleged mishandling of the crisis and cheer the deaths in blue states – but he also picks at the scabs of other wounds in the American psyche.
You haven’t earned the right to say anything bad about America. Go back to your birthplace and clean it up. You left it a MESS and now you are complaining about the USA. What good are you to your country of birth (NONE), and now all you do about (OUR) COUNTRY is complain. You’re not needed user. So, go to THE OTHER COUNTRIES that you brag are SO MUCH BETTER THAN OUR COUNTRY. TAKE YOUR BUTT AND LEAVE.Trump Supporter, on Facebook
Chief among these unhealed sores in the American body politic is the issue of race relations in 21st Century America. A large number of Trump supporters identify as white Protestants – many of them from the Evangelical Christian movement that thrives in the South and Midwest – and they viscerally hate people of color. Oh, they pretend they don’t, and they often point out that they support prominent African-American Republicans and “conservatives” such as HUD Secretary Ben Carson, the incendiary former liberal-turned-rabid right wing commentator Candace Owens, and the late Herman Cain, whose refusal to wear a mask at this summer’s pro-Trump rally in Tulsa, OK cost him his life; he died of COVID-19 not too long ago. But that’s just window-dressing. Many Trump supporters hate Black Americans, especially prominent ones such as Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), who is also a Muslim Somali-born U.S. citizen.
Here are some selected comments from a story – Trump attacks Omar for criticizing US: ‘How did you do where you come from?’ posted on Facebook by the news site The Hill.
Under the article’s “thumbnail” which bears this summary – JUST IN: President Trump complained that Rep. Ilhan Omar, who arrived in the United States with her family as a child after fleeing war-torn Somalia, should not be giving input on how to run the country, asking “how is your country doing,” despite her being a U.S. citizen. – a Latina Facebook member commented thusly:
I can answer how is my country doing, we are a divided country that everyone is laughing at us. Where other countries have a better education system. Where our constitution states that that we are all created equal is a complete lie and has been a lie for decades.
And no I will not leave because this is my country, but I will use my right of the First Amendment to express myself.
Many other Facebook members replied in support of this commenter. Others, who support Trump, reacted predictably:
Trump Supporter #1: WRONG! The USA is off Obama’s apology tour. We are respected around the world!
Trump Supporter #2: Don’t let the boot hit you in the ass on the way out.
Trump Supporter #3: Are you legal? If not, leave if you hate it so much here.
Trump Supporter #4: You haven’t earned the right to say anything bad about America. Go back to your birthplace and clean it up. You left it a MESS and now you are complaining about the USA. What good are you to your country of birth (NONE), and now all you do about (OUR) COUNTRY is complain. You’re not needed user. So, go to THE OTHER COUNTRIES that you brag are SO MUCH BETTER THAN OUR COUNTRY. TAKE YOUR BUTT AND LEAVE.
Trump Supporter #5:This is what the Dems allow..
They do not support the Constitution…
The responsibility of the individual…to work and not riot, burn buildings, murder, rob, plunder….
The Dems have Sanctuary cities…feces, rats, needles, illegals given what citizens do not even get, Sodomy of children and Brown lowering the sentence to a misdemeanor, gangs butchering victims….
This particular comment thread contained at least 82 replies. Some of them were supportive of the original comment-writer; most were not.
The same folks who espouse anti-immigrant, racist, and anti-Muslim views also include men and women who rail against the wearing of masks in public places, protest to “reopen” their states’ economies, and post misleading comments, memes, and right-wing propaganda that calls COVID-19 a “plandemic” and that the virus will disappear on or after Election Day in November.
I have stated this in some of my comments on Facebook and on this blog, but I will reiterate it again to pound the message home:
Donald Trump did not create the coronavirus known as COVID-19. No one did. Not the Chinese. Not some mad scientist or terrorist group. Viruses mutate in nature. The influenza virus mutates. So does the virus that causes SARS, which is closely related to the one that is currently running amok across the planet.
However, Trump and many of his Cabinet members, including Vice President Mike Pence, have totally fumbled the federal government’s response. Trump deliberately downplayed the then-new crisis because he didn’t want a public health disaster to blemish his track record of alleged accomplishments, especially those related to the economy and the health of the stock market.
And because Trump was elected and not appointed or crowned as royalty, those people who voted for him in 2016 and say “Trump 2020” even after his pitiful performance as President since he took the Oath of Office on January 20, 2017 are personally on the hook for the 200,818 – and counting – deaths from the COVID-19 pandemic.
QED. End of story.
 In Colombia, my late parents’ country of origin and where most of my family still lives, the number of known COVID-19 cases is 777,537 (fifth place), with 24,570 recorded fatalities (eighth place).