“‘There’s No Place for Them to Go’: I.C.U. Beds Near Capacity Across U.S.” “‘Never expected this to happen in the US’: How the COVID-19 pandemic exploded from March to December.” “More Americans died from coronavirus Wednesday than died on 9/11.” This is just a sampling of the headlines that appeared on news sites yesterday, the day 3,054 people died from COVID-19 in the U.S., a horrifying jump from the previous record of 2,769 set on May 7. With that in mind, in addition to the warning that the country is likely to see an unfathomable 538,893 deaths by April 1, 2021, you might think the Trump administration would do something—anything!—to stop the spread of the virus, which it said in October it’s not even trying to control. Or, at the very least, that it wouldn’t actively try to get people sick. But: surprise!
On Wednesday—again, the day more people in the U.S. died of the coronavirus than during the 2001 terrorist attacks—the State Department held a 200-person evening affair at the presidential guesthouse. According to The Washington Post, the indoor party included a tour of the first lady’s holiday decorations, followed by a tour across the street of Blair House. Naturally, drinks were involved, which experts have said alcohol encourages people to stand closer together at a time when they are not wearing protective face coverings, which the Post reports is exactly what happened. The gathering was just the first in a series of CDC–flouting events that Mike Pompeo’s State Department reportedly plans to host in the coming days; a 900-person indoor party is scheduled for next week. Also on Wednesday, the White House hosted two 100-plus-person Hanukkah parties, where guests mingled with a mask-free chief of staff, Mark Meadows, and got to listen to a maskless Donald Trump claim the 2020 election was stolen from him and that “If certain very important people, if they have wisdom and if they have courage, we’re going to win this election in a landslide.”
Of course, it’s not hard to see why the upper echelons of the Trump administration are happily carrying on with their parties, which are seemingly super-spreader events waiting to happen. While your average American is terrified about getting COVID-19, the president’s pals have less to worry about, given that they’re able to get lifesaving drugs that the country’s peons cannot. Per The New York Times:
“We should not have Chris Christie and Ben Carson—and in the case of Carson with intervention by the president—get access,” Arthur Caplan, a medical ethicist, told the Times. “That is not the way to secure public support for difficult rationing systems.”
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