If ever you wanted an example of the insanity of man, just pause for a moment to consider the current surge in new Covid cases in the US. It is beyond my comprehension that despite the most successful surge in vaccinations in the world, by an administration that started from a position of chaos, a large segment of the population is behaving recklessly when it comes to the safety of others. The Biden administration can face absolutely no criticism for its hugely successful vaccination effort. Certainly, nobody can point at this president as being one that has failed the American people. The people are failing themselves and it's costing over a thousand lives a day.
Of course America is not unique in its desperate need to regain some semblance of normality. Nobody wants to live like they have had to live over the past year. It goes against everything we remember to be normal life. However, what is unique, is the deep politicisation of the virus and this is where things become almost sinister in their nature. The US response under the previous administration was a disaster. It exposed the callous nature of a president that could not give a damn how many lives were lost, as long as he retained power. To that end, he mobilised his political allies in red states up and down the country to downplay the dangers of the virus and ridicule those who advocated mitigation. I said it then and I'll say it again now, it was a clear case of reckless homicide and if you doubt this statement, simply read the definition.
Reckless homicide is a crime in which the perpetrator was aware that their act creates significant risk of death or grievous bodily harm in the victim, but ignores the risk and continues to act, and a human death results.
The root of the problems faced today, dates back to the calculated irresponsible messaging that was fed to Americans. It caused unnecessary death then, and it is doing the same today. Nobody could claim that the messaging from the current administration is anything other than science driven and yet, a large segment of the population is simply not listening. The problem is, Republican's continue to push messaging that this is a first amendment rights issue. To say this is ludicrous is an understatement, but still it resonates and if for no other reason than it provides an excuse for idiots to behave irresponsibly. You only have to listen to the tense exchange between Jim Jordan and Tony Fauci in hearings this week. Jordan saw an opportunity for Fox News soundbites and went after Fauci in self promotion exercise. Whilst he was made to look a fool, the message he gave is now out there and publicised because of the media storm Jordan knew it would create. The reality is, his reckless words on that day will lead to more loss of life and whilst he can hide behind the fact that he was standing up for liberty and freedom. It was just plain and simple political propaganda.
It appears to me the problem is, a large segment of the population has switched off and considers the pandemic over now that they are getting vaccinated. It really highlights the lack of control that can be imposed at a federal level. I suspect that the administration has been forced to factor in this selective deafness. Hence, why we are seeing the vaccination program becoming even more focused, as they effectively try to save Americans from themselves.
I read much on social media about the fact that Americans are being distracted from the consequences of the pandemic by other events. It appears that no level of public health messaging, is reaching those not prepared to listen. They simply could not give a damn about anyone but themselves. Some folk are prepared to roll the dice and if that kills a few fellow Americans, then so be it. If you look back to my tweets, going back to November last year, I said I though the final death toll would possibly be in the region of 600,000. I was attacked for being a fear monger at the time, but alas, it appears I may prove to have been correct in my assessment. Nobody wants to be right about something like this, but when it's all over and people look back, they will see that it simply didn't have to be this way and hundreds of thousands of loved ones should still be alive today.
Once wearing a mask became a political statement, there was no way back. It is an absolute indictment on Republican leadership, that they made it so and I am confident that history will reflect that. However, it will not bring back the loved ones lost, nor does it bode well for the future, if public health messaging is viewed through a political prism. It is representative of a state of mind that has been corrupted by special interests. Whether you like it or not, the attitude that old people and the vulnerable are acceptable collateral damage in the pursuit of keeping the economy open, is at the heart of Republican values. The fact that it is short sighted and ultimately detrimental to the economy, is outweighed by the economic immediacy of the perceived problem. It is the exact same attitude that says 40,000 dead Americans is acceptable collateral damage to maintain the flow of gun lobby money. It's the same attitude that says that the environment is acceptable collateral damage in the pursuit of deregulation. It is a political ideology challenge. Once you reach a point where nothing matters but profit, then what's left when you've destroyed everything?