As the now-infamous Coronavirus curve has flattened out, America moves toward uncharted territory. It is undeniable that the power of getting this country back on track now rests with 50 state governors. Still, “We must guard against a dangerous rebound,” asserted President Donald Trump in his daily Coronavirus Crisis press conference on April 22. But before we worry about rebounds, it might be best to focus on where we stand now.
Snapshot in Time
As of April 23, 2020, 828,441 people are suspected of having COVID-19 in the U.S. The number of confirmed cases is actually 824,230, according to the CDC. In total, 46,379 victims are said to have died of the virus, but only 40,457 of these are confirmed cases. These numbers are far lower than projected by medical experts. As such, these figures are on par with the seasonal flu.
Health.com reports, “This season CDC estimates that, as of mid-March, between 29,000 and 59,000 have died due to influenza illnesses.” That’s quite a wide range, but any which way you cut those numbers, the Coronavirus mortality rate appears to be landing somewhere within that span. Put another way, it does not seem that COVID-19 deaths will massively exceed seasonal flu statistics.
Nevertheless, here we are, living in an odd reality – awaiting governors to begin the grand reopening. Americans are getting more than a bit perturbed at the sluggishness – one could assert even a leisurely pace – that state elected officials are taking to announce a cessation of stay-at-home orders. Anxiety for many Americans has turned from concern over catching the virus to the ability to pay the rent.
Questions remain regarding the efficacy of the lockdown. Data on the usefulness of mass quarantines reducing the death toll of the virus, opined Tucker Carlson, has not shown the strategy to be effective. Last week, Liberty Nation’s Onar Åm similarly reported on a country that refused to force its people into isolation: “The surprisingly good numbers coming out of Sweden are worth noticing. They may be directly relevant to the ongoing process of reopening the economy in America. If Sweden’s laissez-faire policy is successful, it could help other countries to handle the virus in a less economically destructive way when the virus returns in the next flu season.”
These could be excellent lessons learned for next season. Still, as we remain in a current state of uncertainty aboard an economic Titanic headed straight for the iceberg, governors would do well to take the helm soon. The larger the vessel, the earlier the course must be set to avoid tragedy.
Georgia’s governor did just that and has been on the hot seat ever since. Gov. Brian Kemp permitted many businesses in the Peach State to open and has been getting an earful – even from President Trump. “I want him to do what he thinks is right, but I disagree with him on what he is doing,” Trump offered at a White House briefing. “I think it’s too soon.”
Coming from the president, this is a troublesome comment. It will undoubtedly give other governors pause before taking steps to vanquish the not necessarily effective stay-at-home orders in their states. One wonders how helpful this statement was and is to the current situation. Logic and proportion seem to be in short supply in dealing with the Coronavirus. As such, some things are better left unsaid as state officials go about the business of governing.
Read more from Leesa K. Donner.
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