COVID-19 BECAME “POLITICIZED” — PRECAUTIONS BECAME EXPENDABLE

By Vincent Lyn

The COVID-19 Pandemic hit us over one year ago and yet many parts of the world, especially the U.S. are now facing a surging second wave the likes of we haven’t seen since the Spanish Flu of 1918. And yet with everything we’ve learned in the past 100 years, and just how deadly pandemics are many leaders and citizens are still in denial with regards COVID-19. It seems that until they are lying on their backs or as in this case on their stomachs maybe then they will wake up but sadly by that point death is knocking at your door. Still it wouldn’t make any difference for many, as there have been people who on their death beds from COVID their last words are of anger blaming it on something else. The utter stupidity I throw up my hands with incredulity.

Discovering the origins of an emerging infectious disease outbreak is a quintessential scientific question — or under normal circumstances, that’s how it should be. With then COVID-19 pandemic, nothing seems normal. What should have been a routine scientific question calling for an objective investigation and an evidence-based conclusion has instead become highly politicized theater on the international stage.

A quick fact check that most now believe it began in Wuhan, China a city of 11 million and within one month the Chinese government locked the entire city down. Nothing moved in or out. As soon as it spread to surrounding Hubei Province population of 60 million, China knew they had a serious problem and just like they had done in Wuhan they locked down Hubei Province and within another month the entire country of 1.4 billion. Neighboring countries like Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea, Vietnam and most S.E Asian countries started locking down implementing testing, contact tracing and quarantining immediate cases that arose. They also shut down all air travel in and out of their specific countries.

Did the West even take any notice? Was there any Pandemic preparedness put in place? Well we all know the answer to these questions. On February 21, Italy detected its first COVID-19 case yet we now know it was circulating in Italy from September, 2019, according to a study by the Italian National Cancer Institute signaling that COVID-19 might have spread beyond China earlier than previously thought. The World Health Organization has said the new coronavirus and COVID-19, the respiratory disease it causes, were unknown before the outbreak was first reported in Wuhan, China in December, 2019.

With the devastation that ensued in the Lombardy region of Northern Italy, the rest of Europe and U.S. were dumb-struck and yet still no plans were implemented. The U.K. along with the U.S. did absolutely zero. One possible early source is the first reported U.S. case of COVID-19, which occurred in a Washington man who became ill on January 19 after returning from Wuhan, China on January 15. Until now, the first U.S. fatality from the pandemic was assumed to be in the Seattle area on February 28, but postmortem testing on deaths from February 6 and February 17 now confirm that COVID-19 was spreading in the San Francisco Bay area weeks earlier than previously thought. Both fatalities in Santa Clara County had no travel history, and likely acquired COVID-19 through community spread. Santa Clara officials had marked the first death from COVID-19 in their county on March 9. It became the first site of confirmed community spread in the U.S., which up until that point had reported only travel-related cases.

And yet with everything we knew, the train wreck was coming and disaster unfolding the government did absolutely nothing. Trump and his band of merry men downplayed it making up all sorts of insane lies and basically saying it will just magically disappear. Paid no attention to China, Italy and other parts of the world that were reeling from the pandemic. Yet once the pandemic took hold of NYC back in March I knew it was time to get out of the city and I left March 18, and headed to Southern Florida where the cases were also spiraling out of control. Yet once again the rest of the country looked on in horror with what was happening in NYC. Freezer trucks lined up outside over crowded hospitals. People who were very ill gasping for breath being turned away from emergency facilities and ending up dying at home and even in their cars. Yet by mid-March, the disease was close to stabilizing in China, while the U.S. began to see its number of cases surging. The contrasting trajectory of virus spread that was lessening in Asia compared to Europe and the U.S. Yet once again no plan was implemented.

Here we are all over again with coronavirus cases rising in almost every U.S. state. But the surge is worst now in places where leaders neglected to keep up forceful virus containment efforts or failed to implement basic measures like mask mandate. It’s downright egregious and lamentable behavior. And like Trump these governors should be held accountable for basically allowing their own citizens to die. There’s no two ways to look at it, they’ve committed cold and calculated murder. And many Americans still actually believe they live in a free and democratic society. That’s the biggest lie of all and most have fallen for it.

In early August, China allowed American journalists to visit the BSL-4 lab in Wuhan. That seemingly symbolic move signaled that future WHO investigation teams will have access to the institute, but it also suggested that it would be unrealistic to expect the team to unearth any smoking gun evidence — if it ever even existed — that links the lab to the outbreak. Just imagine how devastating such evidence would be to the Chinese regime. So where did the novel coronavirus come from? In the end, with the origin of COVID-19, having become so politicized in the context of a looming new Cold War, having a truly independent, transparent, and thorough investigation whose findings are accepted by all parties will be a ‘Mission Impossible’. Simply put, we may never know.

If ever there has been a more politicized event in America than COVID-19 you’d be hard pressed to find one. It’s become a humanitarian disaster of epic proportion. The type of disaster you’d only hear about in a war-torn country many of which I’ve been to like Iraq, Syria or South Sudan. I would’ve never expected to be witnessing the same magnitude of disaster unfolding in the U.S. Mass death on a wartime scale, economic hardship and rampant joblessness also on a wartime scale. And yet there are still anti-maskers, naysayers and conspiracy theorists downplaying the pandemic. There are no words to express the utter stupidity of people all in the name of free-dumb.

Vincent Lyn

CEO/Founder at We Can Save Children

Director of Creative Development at African Views Organization

Economic & Social Council at United Nations

Middle East Correspondent at Wall Street News Agency

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Vincent Lyn

Vincent Lyn

CEO-We Can Save Children. Director Creative Development-African Views Organization, ECOSOC at United Nations. International Human Rights Commission (IHRC)