Donald Trump defends his decision to mislead the American people about the Covid-19 virus for two months, claiming he didn't want to 'panic' the public.
There is much wrapped up in that unconvincing explanation. He felt it was better to give the American people a false sense of security. He told them it was no worse than the flu. He told them his government had the whole thing under control. He told them it would disappear by April.
He also took no steps to implement the pandemic playbook passed on to Trump's administration by the outgoing Obama administration. He didn't lift a finger. The previous year he had disbanded the Obama-era pandemic response team, leaving his nation vulnerable to the virus when it appeared.
Trump ignored the briefings, the warnings from his staff and medical experts. We know he had this information. He admitted it openly to Bob Woodward. He understood how easily transmissible this virus is. He knew it was far more deadly than any seasonal influenza.
Who told Donald Trump that misleading the American people about this was in the public interest? Who told Donald Trump that failing to muster and mobilize the federal government's resources to fight the pandemic was a good call?
Who told Trump such things? Nobody. This is pure Trump following his instincts and his instincts are based on whatever he perceives in his personal best interests.
Donald Trump gave Covid-19 a two-month head start. He waited until every room in the house was engulfed in flames before yelling "fire." It was the act of a disturbed mind utterly incapable of empathy or concern for anyone other than himself.
Donald Trump is directly, personally responsible for the deaths of tens of thousands of Americans. Not all the current tally of 191,000 dead would have been spared, but tens of thousands of them could have been but for the intransigence of the most dishonest president in the history of the United States. Like the legend of Nero, Trump fiddled while Rome burned.
The tragic part of this is that, for a good percentage of the American public, that's okay.