Now that we have real leadership from the White House, are Americans better at fighting the COVID War?

We were informed by the media that a principal reason the U.S. was unequal to the task of fighting the COVID War was poor leadership from the White House. Donald Trump was anti-science and refused to believe that shutdowns and masks for the general public would have a significant impact on the coronavirus. See “Inside Trump’s Failure: The Rush to Abandon Leadership Role on the Virus” (NYT, July 2020), for example.

The roots of the nation’s current inability to control the pandemic can be traced to mid-April, when the White House embraced overly rosy projections to proclaim victory and move on.

Donald Trump has been gone for 7 months now. President Biden is providing fantastic science-guided leadership from the White House. Are Americans responding to this improvement by behaving better? The CDC recommends indoor masking, for example. Have you seen more people wearing masks indoors this month compared to in early January 2021? More people washing hands and using sanitizer? Fewer gatherings? In your direct experience, are more people or fewer people traveling (and therefore spreading variant COVID!) compared to when the hated dictator was in power? (data point: our hotel in Niagara Falls said that they’d been 100 percent full for months)

One place that was following the science, in our recent travels, was the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. Masks are required in an outdoor garden/zoo, in order to protect the animals from contracting plague. Masks are, of course, required indoors, so that child visitors are protected.

The scientists at the museum want to remind you that when non-natives move into a country, the natives will have a tough time affording “food or other resources”, that the non-natives may bring disease, and that, once the non-natives arrive, the natives may stop reproducing.

What about at the art museum next door, where the median age of a visitor is probably 40 years older than at the natural history museum? Masks are optional, indoors and out.

Overall, our experience has been that, despite great leadership from the White House, Americans are not #FollowingTheLeader. Unless the vaccination rate is near 100 percent, mask usage indoors doesn’t match the old CDC’s recommendation that only the vaccinated can shed the hijab. Signs and practices certainly do not line up with the CDC’s latest guidance that everyone, including the vaccinated, should wear a mask indoors. From a McDonald’s near the Syracuse, NY airport, August 3:

The sign regarding the “newly released” science was already out of date and none of the customers inside was wearing a mask.

3 thoughts on “Now that we have real leadership from the White House, are Americans better at fighting the COVID War?

  1. Has there been any conclusive proof that masks have altered the course of the pandemic, or stopped a significant amount of cases? Prior to March 2020, almost all scientific research showed their benefit for stopping respiratory viruses was pretty negligible, except perhaps for people who were actively sick. Has any new research emerged in the past year and a half that shows where that old science got it wrong? Also who cares if you don’t get covid at the grocery store if you just get it a few hours later at a bar?

  2. It is a disaster from personal liberty point of view but may be a good idea to always wear a N95 mask in NYC subway. I used to catch cold almost every month when I used to take NYC subway, a generation ago. Got a lot healthier when I changed my daily commute habits, catching a cold once every 2 years at most.

Comments are closed.