For the past four days, I have heard Trump loyalists like Wilbur Ross and Larry Kudlow, disaffected Republicans like Megan McCain and Ana Navarro-Cárdenas, ‘woke’ or former Republicans like Nicolle Wallace and David Jolly use the phrase, “ this is not political.” What they all have been talking about is the potential Coronavirus pandemic. I am not going to argue a scientific case to elicit fear or panic, because I know very little about science, but I am going to argue the politics. The decrying of political consideration seems to be a convenient distraction for Republicans when fear strikes America. Much like the road-tested “ thoughts and prayers” dragged from the Republicans’ playbook attic, following every mass shooting, avoidance politics has become the new version of burying your head in the sand. Speaking of the gun issue, the GOP always and strategically retreat to a convenient political conversation evoking the 2nd Amendment while the outlandish gun violence unique to the United States is ignored as a political witch hunt by Democrats.
Democrats get accused of politicizing grief and then back down, Republicans wrap themselves and their bullets in the flag. Unfortunately, it all vanishes until the next shaky camera shot of crying parents, distraught loved ones and sprinting kids appear above the breaking news banner. Let me make my opinion perfectly clear, all things in America are political. The institution of slavery and Jim Crow were political, as evidenced by the anti-lynching bill passed just yesterday. The fight over health care has been raged since the Theodore Roosevelt administration, and electoral wins and losses are based on your political leanings. There is no rational debate if saving lives is a good idea, we debate what side of the aisle you sit. In a famous Jimmy Kimmel show bit, the question was asked; do you prefer Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act?
The most transparent response, “the name says it all.”
A gay soldier outed himself on national television, to ask a question during the September 2011 Republican presidential debate and the mostly Republican audience booed the veteran. He was not even afforded a ‘thank you for your service’ from former Senator Rick Santorum, because of partisan expediency, and because it called for a cleverly worded political condemnation to get votes. When former President Obama was criticized for the BP oil spill, not being capped overnight, Republicans went on the attack for political advantage. Sarah Palin whose most famous contribution to the political discord has been the introduction of the chant, “drill baby, drill” accused Obama of being in bed with Big Oil.
Now we have the coronavirus, highlighted by a convoluted press conference led by President Trump, and his flacks falling in line to contradict doctors, scientists, and themselves repeatedly. Mr. Trump told us over the past few days, between blaming the Democratic debate and Nancy Pelosi for the stock market drop, that the virus could get worse or better in the days and weeks ahead, but that nobody knows. This, in spite of Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease, conveying that the virus intrinsically has a higher mortality rate than influenza because “this virus has adapted extremely well to human species.” So good luck America, remember President Trump has assured you this is not political.
Vote in 2020 for Change.