On Wednesday, the U.S. death toll from COVID-19 passed 216,000, and new projections suggest that as many as 400,000 Americans will likely be dead by the end of January 2021.
Also on Wednesday, First Lady Melania Trump revealed that her son, Barron, had tested positive for conronavirus but was doing fine and had suffered no negative health effects as a result of his diagnosis, which is most certainly wonderful news, no matter what political party you belong to.
In the essay where she shared the news of her son’s diagnosis, Mrs. Trump seemed to suggest that everything was going to be fine for all of us despite the rising number of casualties from the novel coronavirus which has been badly mishandled by her husband, writing:
“Our country has overcome many hardships and much adversity, and it is my hope COVID-19 will be another obstacle we will be able to tell future generations we overcame—and learned from in the process.”
And then there was her advice on how we can all help fight off the virus, and that’s where Melania’s words devolved into outright absurdity:
“A balanced diet, fresh air, and vitamins really are vital to keep our bodies healthy. For your complete well-being, compassion and humility are just as important in keeping our minds strong.”
So we’re supposed to fight back against an airborne pandemic by eating a balanced diet, getting fresh air, and making sure to get compassion everywhere it can be found?
But it’s what was missing from Melania’s advice that’s most glaring and yet most predictable when it comes to this utterly feckless administration: There was no focus on safety, on science, or on medicine. There was nary a word about wearing a mask or practicing social distancing. Instead, we got platitudes. And as good as those may sound, they don’t do a single damn thing to save life or prevent an infection.
Melania Trump, much like her husband, is just playing a part. And, much like her husband, she’s offering us words instead of action. That’s why we need to take action at the ballot box and let them both know that we reject them and their ineptitude.