Editorial of the “World”. Just four years ago, Donald Trump promised to the stunned world to “End the American carnage”. On the eve of leaving the White House, the Republican president leaves behind a country in tatters, crossed by rarely equaled divisions, shaken by unprecedented political violence and, above all, ravaged by a rampant pandemic and, in places, totally out of control .
Its management of the health crisis, marked in turn by indifference, denial, lies and political instrumentalization, leaves the United States facing a record that is unique in the world: nearly 400,000 deaths in eleven months, 23 millions of people infected. To its credit will remain only the financial efforts deployed to allow the rapid discovery of a vaccine.
But, for the rest, by denying the gravity of a disease which he himself contracted, by affirming, against all evidence that “ the virus [allait] disappear as if by a miracle “, By stubbornly refusing to promote the most elementary gestures – wearing a mask or social distancing – by systematically giving preference to economic interests over public health issues, the outgoing president encouraged a deadly laissez-faire in the States bound , mainly, by the Republicans, and elsewhere complicated the task of elected officials, often Democrats, determined to fight against the pandemic.
The current slaughter therefore appears to be the consequence of this mixture of arrogance, cynicism, contempt for scientists and shameless lies characteristic of the personality of Mr. Trump, the first leader ousted because of his catastrophic choices on the Covid.
Joe Biden’s empathy
It is from this grim record that Joe Biden inherits. His first weeks at the White House, where he will settle on January 20, will be entirely devoted to the fight against the pandemic and to the recovery of the American economy. The Democrat, mocked by his opponent for having adopted the mask and the precautionary measures against Covid-19 as early as last spring, made a solemn speech from Thursday 14, detailing the measures he intends to take to contain the spread virus. Mr. Biden promised financial and logistical efforts to better distribute vaccines, improve the testing and tracing policy, fight against new variants of the virus …
Above all, he once again showed the empathy of which his predecessor proved incapable during these eleven months, during which nearly 400,000 American families lost one of their own. But words of comfort will not be enough. Mr Biden has yet to pass his ‘bailout’ by a Congress quartered by the impeachment procedure against the outgoing president, after the assault of his supporters on the Capitol.
While the disease is experiencing a resurgence in many countries, there are no quick fixes to get rid of it quickly. The Democratic president’s team is not without strengths, however. His future right-hand man in the White House, Ron Klain, coordinated the federal response to the Ebola virus in 2014, and his main advisers will all be recognized and respected experts. It is to be hoped that this consistency will improve federal strategy and give the country, by example and pedagogy, clear guidelines, a discourse based on science and a horizon anchored in reality. Quite the opposite of the lies and procrastination of the outgoing president.
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