By David Martin

Cheney's comments mask the truth


March 25, 2020

As we continue to hunker down and weather this viral epidemic, some of our nation’s leaders have started using tactics to focus blame for causing the global pandemic.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly referred to the COVID-19 coronavirus as the “Chinese virus,” despite growing criticism of that characterization as being racist. Comments made by Liz Cheney, R-Wyo., may not be as pointed, but deserve scrutiny as well.

Appearing on the “Wake Up Wyoming with Glenn Woods” show on KGAB in Cheyenne, Cheney explicitly blamed China for everything happening in the United States.

“We’re in a situation with this absolutely new, fast-moving virus, which, by the way, nobody should ever forget, came out of China,” she said. “That is really important. What the Chinese Communist Party has done in terms of hiding information, in terms of lying about what this virus was, in terms of continuing to allow the practices of the wet markets in China that seemed to have caused the spread of this disease, caused this virus to jump from animals to humans in a way that is devastating us globally.”

The Trump administration is looking for a scapegoat, something people can focus their frustrations on. While the disease did start in China and the country’s government did attempt to suppress early knowledge about the virus and should be held accountable for that, our own government hasn’t done us any favors with early preparation to deal with this pandemic.

Months ago, President Trump dismissed the coronavirus, despite clear evidence it was gaining ground throughout Asia. The U.S. did not start preparing for the coronavirus’ arrival -- the large number of tests needed to help identify and isolate those infected were not ordered, nor was there a push to create additional face masks and other supplies doctors and nurses who would be dealing with the disease would need. Trump said the world was blindsided by the disease, but that’s only because the administration acted like a toddler closing its eyes and plugging its ears in an attempt to make it go away.

That didn’t work, so now many of our leaders are attempting to blame someone else for the problem while ignoring their lack of early action as something that may have enabled the disease to spread further in its first days in our country.

What we need now is decisive action, not a blame game. I would hope Cheney and our other congressional leaders understand that in the coming weeks and months.


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