President Trump must speak out against this growing risk of these "so-called patriots" who self-appoint themselves as the new sheriff in town. Both Biden and Trump have their work cut out for them if they really want to quell the disturbances. Otherwise, the air's hate and anger are so thick, we're about to enter an uncivil conflict of guns, violence, and death. Standing up for God, country, race and revenge can make an explosive cocktail.
Chaos in the cities is a real problem. Solving it requires more than presidential photo ops as Trump is doing when he travels to Wisconsin this week to meet with police and to view property damage. It requires bringing people together, hearing the various sides, not take positions because an election is on the way.
Meanwhile, Trump cannot sweep the Coronavirus under the rug, which he and his party did last week. We just discovered that Alabama University has recorded 1200 cases since the school opened up for the semester. But, you bet Trump won't hit the campus to console the sick or to ascertain facts about what's working and what's not. There is no political mileage for TV cameras rolling as schools, sports teams businesses debate whether to proceed or to fold. And, why should he try when he can foment hate in the cities?
Trump has decided upon two paths in dealing with the worst healthcare and economic crises in our lives. The first is manipulating the facts. The second is distorting reality.
MANIPULATING THE FACTS
Trump is manipulating the facts and imposing his political will upon the experts. This is necessary for him to distort the pandemic's realities, so the Coronavirus does not appear to be a significant problem.
In early Spring, he pretended the virus was no worse than the flu. However, the hospitalizations and deaths mounted. When the virus did not suddenly disappear, he put on his snake oil costume and treated us to false hopes with his miracle drugs. "Try it, you'll like it, it will be beautiful," he told us.
This week, with the Republican Convention approaching, he had to change the narrative as his poll numbers were in free fall due to his gross incompetence. Thus, his administration suddenly pushed the FDA and the CDC to take specific incredible actions that he could promote during the RNC event, to show that the end was in sight.
In a whirlwind turn of events, he suddenly promoted convalescent plasma as a treatment for Covid-19 on an emergency basis. The bullying to push the plasma was a mean political stunt. After the FDA, last week, decided against an emergency approval, but Trump's political machine prevailed. Early Saturday morning, Trump cranked up his twitter flurry and blamed the "deep state" for slow-walking the convalescent plasma FDA approval. Hours later, his office announced a press conference to discuss "historic-breakthrough" about the treatment. During the press briefing, Trump and the FDA director told us that there as a documented proven 35% percent reduction in deaths. This was fantastic news and promise. But the scientific community knew they were being duped and challenged the claim. He and the President overwhelming overstated its efficacy as a COVID-19 fix.
Would Trump correct the error during his convention speech? No. Instead, he said, "We developed a wide array of effective treatments, including a powerful antibody treatment known as convalescent plasma. You saw that? On Sunday night, when we announced it. That will save thousands and thousands of lives. Thanks to advancements, we have pioneered the fatality rates, and you look at it, and you look at the numbers, it has been reduced by 80 percent since April — 80 percent."
In effect, like so much of his speech, he lied, misled, and fabricated information critical to our health and way of life.
Then, there was the CDC debacle. On Monday, also Republican Convention Day 1, the CDC brandished a significant change in its recommendations on its website. No longer would non-symptomatic people who came in contact with someone infected, be urged to be tested. Thus, as the President has urged non-stop, the CDC would not recommend tests to bring up the case numbers.
The medical community, again, blew a gasket.
Admiral Giroir from his task force defended the decision, claiming all task force hands were on deck approving the CDC recommendations and urged full speed ahead with the substantially more lenient guideline. Except, that was not true. Dr. Fauci, who Trump suggests, is a member of the "deep state" was under general anesthesia for surgery. He had no chance to voice his disapproval.
As reported by CNN:
"I was under general anesthesia in the operating room and was not part of any discussion or deliberation regarding the new testing recommendations" at that meeting, Fauci told CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta.
"I am concerned about the interpretation of these recommendations and worried it will give people the incorrect assumption that asymptomatic spread is not of great concern. In fact, it is," said Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
Instead of the CDC policy urging that "anyone who had close contact with someone with coronavirus should get tested, whether they have symptoms or not," now, the CDC advises testing if you are in a high-risk population.
This obviously pleases Trump's White House but not those doing the treating. The American Academy of Pediatrics opined, "The inexplicable decision by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to advise against testing individuals who have been exposed to the virus but who are asymptomatic is a dangerous step backward in our efforts to control this deadly virus."
Today, roughly 185,000 people (or more than three times the dead from the Vietnam War) have died from Covid-19. The CDC forecasts now project 200,000 COVID-19 deaths by September 19. The University of Washington, an organization the White House has quoted in the past, is now forecasting its widely cited model, projecting 317,697 deaths in this country by December 1.
While upselling the therapeutics and miracle drugs to show the Coronavirus war is being won, Trump is downplaying infection risks. As the healthcare community rings out alarms that the COVID cases and deaths are skyrocketing, the President and the Republican party amazingly projects the images, "COVID Who" or "Who Cares?".
Nothing depicted this vacuum of concern and empathy more than the President's inaugural speech, RNC night four. He, party leaders, and high-rolling supporters filled the South Lawn with roughly 2000 unmasked and non-social distanced attendees.
According to the University of Washington study, if "95% of Americans wore a mask, the death toll could be reduced by about 67,000 lives". The risks don't matter. Trump wants to show normalcy in action, not a duty to others to keep one another safe.
The President distorted reality continues daily. He flails against sports teams for taking the bench. Our leader threatens universities for putting students and community safety over posting good job numbers. Trump is ready to pop the cork, sing "Happy Days are here again," "the witch is dead," pretending only he can fix it. As facts absolutely point out, only he could be so careless and create such a disaster.
No doubt, according to the polls, America knows it is moving in the wrong direction. We have thirty-million people unemployed, many of them without income, losing health insurance, and uncertain if any help is on the way.
The President knows that his only chance to victory is to scare the country into believing their homes, their lives, their businesses, their way of life is suddenly threatened, more than ever. The real problem is that Trump has lost all moral authority on ending the coronavirus threat. The scientific community simply does not trust him. Now, due to his politicalization of these sacred institutions, nor do they have much stock in the FDA, the CDC, or the President's task force.
Instead of a president leading the way, telling the nation to play it safe, sacrifice now to win the day tomorrow, he and his party leaders prefer to change the subject to guns rather than masks.
Which makes one wonder, how did the disruptions in the cities become much more important to this President than a pandemic he is losing? While white vs. black, riots, looting, lawlessness are indeed significant to us as a people, how can one compare the losses and the risks from an ongoing pandemic that could continue to kill hundreds of thousands of people? Most of us angrily see the nonsense on TV, but we're not personally bothered by what we see in Portland or Seattle. But, the Coronavirus? Our joblessness is almost 11 percent, with roughly 30 million people unemployed. Our rents are due; Our schools are shuttering; Our aunts, uncles, moms, pops, best friends are getting sick. Canada, Europe, and Mexico have built walls to prevent our entry. Movie houses are closed, health clubs shuttered, restaurants half-full. Our businesses are working on fumes if they are working at all.
Parts of select cities have seen riots, but we can turn off the sirens by clicking the remote.
There is not a remote chance that we can return millions of people to work until and unless we get this scourge under control.
Trump smells campaign blood, and for him, a photo op against a sea of police blue is worth further antagonizing the communities in pain and fomenting even more acrimony, hate, and bloodshed.
The President is putting this country on the course of no return. The last thing the country needs is to return him to the White House.