Time to recognize Trump’s mistakes

Time to recognize Trump's mistakes

Julian Michanie

The United States continues to lead in most cases of Covid-19 and it’s important to recognize the role our government played in letting the disease run unchecked in our backyard.

  Under the current administration, we saw an ignorance towards the possible outbreak pandemic from Europe and Asia into the United States. As early as Jan. 3, the president’s briefings were surrounding the possible spread of Covid-19 in the United States, yet we saw ineffective changes implemented; the first was a travel ban to China, which the World Health Organization stated two days prior as a useless way to stop the spread of the Covid-19. The disease was continually pushed as a disease with flu-like symptoms by the administration as late as February. Although, the role our government played in the spread of Covid-19 did not start in January but started prior to this year.

In Trump’s 2018 budget, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention got the short end of the stick and had to cut their efforts by 80 percent; the group went from being in 49 countries to 10. The CDC plays a crucial role in disease prevention and analysis across the world. Although no one could have foreseen the ferocity the Covid-19 pandemic had, the resources and funds we had back in 2018 could have given us an extra leg to stand on when things began to escalate with providing information about the disease prior to its initial spreading. Even now, in the 2021 budget, the Trump administration cut $1.2 billion of the CDC’s budget and $35 million to the Infectious Diseases Rapid Response Reserve Fund’s annual contribution.

Instead of telling the American people to prepare for the crisis, the administration withheld information to protect us, but in fact had the opposite effect. Peter Nevarro, the Director of the National Trade Council and one of Trump’s economic advisors circulated two memos in January. The second memo stated that the Covid-19 epidemic could cost the lives of up to 1.2 million Americans, could infect 100 million and could cost the U.S. trillions if left unchecked. On Mar. 30th, in a meeting with Fox News, the president stated “nobody could have predicted this.” Not until the release of these memos in April were the American people informed that the administration knew about the possible effects of the Covid-19 crisis and that they did not take the proper measures when informed.

It took the president 70 days to stop addressing the virus as “simple flu like symptoms” in his presidential briefings and acknowledge it as a “lethal force”.

 Four Senators were so convinced of the possible economic effects that Covid-19 could bring that they sold hundreds of thousands of dollars in stocks they had; this happened after a briefing on Jan. 24, way before the beginning of the markets crash that happened on Feb. 24. The information that the senators were given would have to be monumental to risk their entire careers and break the Stop Trading on Congressional Knowledge Act to make millions.

As senators gain from the economic crash, over 16 million Americans have lost their jobs in one of the worst economic positions the United States has been in since the Great Depression. Currently, 17 percent of the workforce is unemployed.

As you sit in front of your T.V. and see the death toll continue to rise and listen to the government rushing to solve the problem, let the following question float around in your mind: could this have been prevented if the American people weren’t lied to?