Different Takes: Just Which States Ought To Be Liberated If Not Georgia?; Let’s Try Crushing The Curve With These Measures
Opinion writers express views about pandemic issues.
Los Angeles Times:
Wait, Trump Wants To 'LIBERATE' Michigan But Not Georgia?
By now we should all be inured to the whiplash-inducing comments of President Trump, who, as my father used to say, could screw up an iron ball. Just last week he was tweeting his support to armed anti-government activists and conservative protesters seeking an end to stay-at-home orders in three states with Democratic governors: Michigan, Virginia and Minnesota. The president also, contradicting his top health advisors, says he wants an early resumption of normal business and social activity. Well, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, a Republican Trump backer, seemed to take the president seriously (silly man) and announced that Georgia would begin rolling back stay-at-home restrictions, just the kind of move demanded by the folks Trump encouraged to “LIBERATE” (the all-caps were his) other states. Trump’s response to Kemp’s move? “I want him to do what he thinks is right, but I disagree with him on what he is doing,” Trump said late Wednesday. “I think it’s too soon.” (Scott Martelle, 4/23)
Reopen Texas Economy Cautiously, Second COVID-19 Wave Would Devastate
We need to get back to work, but rushing to restart the economy and reigniting the coronavirus pandemic would be the worst possible thing for our economic future.Undoubtedly, the world is on a precipice. The U.S. economy likely contracted 7.1 percent year-over-year in the first three months of 2020. It will plunge 35 percent in the second quarter, according to S&P Global Ratings, a financial analysis and consulting firm. (Chris Tomlinson, 4/24)
The New York Times:
Facing The Coronavirus, Republicans Aren't So Pro-Life After All
I look at the numbers every day, sometimes every hour, sometimes before dawn. China is not to be trusted. Nor is Russia. I’m always curious about the latest death toll out of Sweden, a country with a riskier, more self-regulated approach to keeping people apart. And cheers for long-suffering bell’Italia, finally seeing a drop in active Covid-19 cases. All of us want the same thing — a road map to the way out. The scientific consensus is clear and not that complicated: We need a significant upgrade of testing, contact tracing to track the infected, nuanced and dutiful social isolation, all to buy time until a vaccine is developed. (Timothy Egan, 4/24)
Can We Hold On To The Lesson Of Communal Responsibility That The Coronavirus Pandemic Is Teaching?
Today we are just beginning to grasp the dislocations COVID-19 will wreak upon the nation. If a single untimely death like my grandfather’s can derail a family for decades, it’s stunning to think how painfully tens of thousands of COVID-19 fatalities will ripple through society. The anguish of lost jobs, the corrosive worry about falling ill or paying the rent, the deferred medical appointments, the disrupted educations, the social dislocation, the psychological toll of isolation and despair — these echoes of the coronavirus will be with us long after a vaccine is found. (Renée Loth, 4/24)
New England Journal of Medicine:
Ten Weeks To Crush The Curve
The President says we are at war with the coronavirus. It’s a war we should fight to win. The economy is in the tank, and anywhere from thousands to more than a million American lives are in jeopardy. Most analyses of options and trade-offs assume that both the pandemic and the economic setback must play out over a period of many months for the pandemic and even longer for economic recovery. However, as the economists would say, there is a dominant option, one that simultaneously limits fatalities and gets the economy cranking again in a sustainable way. That choice begins with a forceful, focused campaign to eradicate Covid-19 in the United States. The aim is not to flatten the curve; the goal is to crush the curve. China did this in Wuhan. We can do it across this country in 10 weeks. (Harvey V. Fineberg, 4/23)
Our Hospital's Community Management Strategy For Covid-19 Works
The Covid-19 pandemic is overwhelming hospital and emergency response systems in the U.S., much as it did in Italy. Even with current efforts to increase the number of inpatient beds, some communities will fall short of having enough beds to manage all of the patients with Covid-19. The community-based approach that our hospital has implemented can help. (Janice John, Leah Zallman and Jessamyn Blau, 4/23)
The Washington Post:
I Live In Britain. Thank Goodness There’s No Fox News Here.
The United Kingdom and the United States are both hard-hit by the coronavirus pandemic. Both countries are run by populist blowhards whose larger-than-life hair and egos are inversely proportional to their regard for expertise. And both of those leaders badly botched the crucial early months, failing to prepare testing or protective equipment as the disease silently spread unchecked through populations on both sides of the Atlantic. But there’s something very different about life in Britain in the time of the novel coronavirus: There’s no Fox News here. Thank goodness for that. (Brian Klaas, 4/22)
Protecting Household Employers And Workers During The COVID-19 Pandemic
As it extends aid to people put out of work by the COVID-19 pandemic, the federal government could be doing more to help one group of employers and the vital American workers they employ: Hundreds of thousands of nannies, housekeepers and others employed in private homes. Starting April 3, millions of small businesses became eligible to apply for forgivable loans from the Small Business Administration (SBA) under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which aims to reduce the number of employees who are laid off from small businesses that cannot meet their payrolls... But the SBA’s interim final rule excludes household employers. (Shanthi Nataraj and Krishna B. Kumar, 4/22)
Challenge China And The WHO—But Not While The Pandemic Rages
Leave it to the administration. Even when it articulates a sensible strategy, it blows the timing. And is utterly tone-deaf, paying not the slightest attention to what anyone else believes. Or is willing to accept. Such is the campaign against China and the World Health Organization (WHO) over their failures in dealing with COVID-19. (Doug Bandow, 4/23)
The Assault On Women’s Abortion Rights
As the nation deals with the coronavirus pandemic, women’s reproductive rights are under assault, with Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Ohio, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and Texas seeking to deny abortions. Legislatures in those states are top-heavy with men who will never face the dilemma women confront when faced with an unintended pregnancy. (Mary Ann Sorrentino, 4/23)
Detroit Free Press:
COVID-19's Effects Show Our Leaders Little From The Flint Water Crisis
Saturday marks the sixth anniversary of the day the City of Flint switched its water supply source to the Flint River, systematically poisoning its heavily black population. The fallout from that fateful decision includes the lead poisoning of more than 25,000 children, many of whom now struggle daily with long-term developmental delays, learning disabilities, behavioral problems and brain damage as a result.This occasion arrives amid a historic pandemic that is ravaging black Americans at a disproportionate rate. Black Americans are 133% more likely to contract COVID-19, with deadly consequences. While black people make up only 14% of Michigan’s population, they account for 40% of COVID-19 deaths. (Ben Crump, 4/24)