Perspectives: Oddly Lost During The Pandemic Is Talk About Medicare-For-All; Why Aren’t We Being Honest About How Bad Things Are?
Editorial pages focus on these health topics and others.
The Washington Post:
We’re In A Pandemic. Why Have We Stopped Talking About Medicare-For-All?
Until quite recently, it seemed almost certain that Medicare-for-all would be a major issue in the presidential election. It came up at every Democratic presidential debate. President Trump turned it into a talking point to be used against a future challenger. And when the novel coronavirus pandemic hit, it all but made the case. Contagious viruses, after all, don’t check insurance status before striking. Now it’s crickets. (Helaine Olen, 5/28)
The New York Times:
If We Had A Real Leader
This week I had a conversation that left a mark. It was with Mary Louise Kelly and E.J. Dionne on NPR’s “All Things Considered,” and it was about how past presidents had handled moments of national mourning — Lincoln after Gettysburg, Reagan after the Challenger explosion and Obama after the Sandy Hook school shootings. The conversation left me wondering what America’s experience of the pandemic would be like if we had a real leader in the White House. If we had a real leader, he would have realized that tragedies like 100,000 Covid-19 deaths touch something deeper than politics: They touch our shared vulnerability and our profound and natural sympathy for one another. (David Brooks, 5/28)
Trump's Reluctance To Wear A Face Mask Sends A Fatal Message
Just hours after America reached the grim milestone of 100,000 people killed in the pandemic, President Donald Trump took a moment to promote a wild theory whose acceptance can only lead to more deaths. The President retweeted a link to an article claiming that wearing face masks has nothing to do with public health, and is instead a path to "social control." The article is the kind of harebrained analysis making the rounds in the moldy corners of the far right, where every manner of bizarre, anti-scientific, anti-establishment notion seems to grow like a bacterial culture, challenging the immune system of America's democracy. Of course, Trump had to amplify it to his millions of followers. (Frida Ghitis, 5/28)
Holding China Accountable For Their Attempted Coverup Of Coronavirus
Looking back on all the pain, frustration, and hardship of the last several months, there’s one thing that sticks out to me: it didn’t have to be this bad. We are more than capable of containing a virus if we catch it early. In fact, world leaders built an infrastructure for that exact situation over 70 years ago. Yet, months after coronavirus cases appeared in China, the World Health Organization (WHO) was still promoting lies and downplaying the severity of the virus to protect the Communist Party of China (CCP). (Rep. Kevin Hern, 5/28)
Charles Mitchell: Coronavirus In Pa. — Secrecy, Hypocrisy By Governor Exacerbate Crisis
Shep’s Barber Shop, just outside Harrisburg, Pa., became the epicenter of the movement to defy Gov. Tom Wolf’s heavy-handed economic shutdown. Fighting back tears at a rally, owner Brad Shepler delivered a warning far clearer than anything the governor has said in weeks: “You need to realize, we’re all losing our rights as American citizens. And we should all be afraid of that.” State officials threatened to revoke Shepler’s barbering license and fine him up to $10,000 per day after he reopened his business without authorization. This individual revolt — and countless others — came just days after eight Pennsylvania counties threatened to ditch Wolf’s haphazard reopening process to make their own decisions. Meanwhile, state lawmakers have passed bill after bill to reopen critical industries and reverse Wolf’s refusal to abide by transparency measures in the state’s equivalent of the Freedom of Information Act. (Charles Mitchell, 5/28)
Time To Spark A COVID-19-Like Climate Response
The scale of government spending to tackle COVID-19, paired with public support, needs to extend to an even deadlier crisis colliding with this pandemic — the climate crisis. Being one of the biggest contributors to global carbon dioxide emissions, and among the most hurt by climate damages, especially along the country’s West and East coasts, the United States is pivotal in reversing the climate direction. With greater acceptance of fiscal spending to tackle catastrophes, the U.S. — even if far-fetched in the current political environment — and the other leading emitters should spark a global green stimulus. (Vinod Thomas, 5/28)
In other editorials, views on the passing of Larry Kramer —
He Was A ‘Force Of Nature’: Anthony Fauci, Tom Frieden, And Others Remember Larry Kramer
AIDS changed everything,” Larry Kramer once said. So he made it his life’s work to change how people perceived the disease, those living with it, and how medical research was done in the United States and around the world. Kramer, an outspoken AIDS activist, died Wednesday morning at age 84. (Patrick Skerrett, 5/28)
LGBT Activist Larry Kramer Spent His Life Upending Prejudice
When the Stonewall riots began the modern LGBTQ liberation movement in the summer of 1969, Larry Kramer was still deeply in the closet in his first career as a film executive. He was careful to bring a woman with him to all the Monday-night executive screenings. And yet, he was also already using his power as an artist to promote the gay agenda. (Charles Kaiser, 5/29)