On February 29, 2020 at 2:06 pm, President Trump announced the first known death in the U.S. from COVID-19. At that time there were 66 cases of coronavirus in the U.S., and worldwide 85,406 cases in at least 60 countries and 2,924 deaths.
“Additional cases in the United States are likely, ” Trump said, “but healthy individuals should be able to fully recover. And we think that will be a statement that we can make with great surety now that we’ve gotten familiar with this problem. They should be able to recover should they contract the virus. So, healthy people, if you’re healthy, you will probably go through a process and you’ll be fine.”
This press conference revealed how incompetent the President was at a most super-critical moment in history based on his woeful lack of understanding of a novel virus and the mathematical progression of infection, transmission and spread.
While Trump considers himself a “wartime president,” a true wartime president would know that sneak attacks are just that – sneak attacks! When the enemy is planning to attack at dawn and kill thousands of soldiers, there will be zero reported deaths before dawn. Such is the case with a novel virus. Since that press conference, 23,649 American citizens have died from COVID-19 in just 45 days (as of April 14, 2020).
- over three years to
- read some good books on pandemics that would have spelled out for him the lessons of history, and
- develop a strategic plan to rebuild the Pandemic Stockpile and prepare for the worst.
- months of advance notice to talk directly to people on the front lines of the virus burning across China, South Korea and Europe, and
- plenty of time to listen to top medical scientists and professionals to learn about and fully appreciate the science and consequences of a viral pandemic sneak attack.
It was his #1 priority as President to understand that in the quiet of dawn when that first death was reported, one death would become 2, then 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128 and would continue to double until it peaked. It was his job to learn and prepare himself as President, but he failed to do so blinded by his self-centered arrogance and willful ignorance of one of the greatest national security threats to the American people.
After a lifetime of getting away with every crappy thing he does, Trump has built up a classic bully’s perception that he can bluff his way through anything which his handlers and apologizers brand as “leadership,“ but that notion is so egregiously far from the truth. Trump never says the right words in the right way at the right time, and he never will.
For such a monumental failure of insight, vision, resolve and leadership, Donald Trump does not deserve another term as President of the United States.