After 60 days of lockdown, the Trump administration has no idea what to do next. The facts are as follows: the measures instituted to protect from COVID-19 are destroying our economy, and we simply cannot keep doing it until a vaccine is readily available, as per director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, Dr. Michael Osterholm. He has declared that we are about to ruin the society we know today, and we are not sure what we get in exchange.
On the other hand, reopening the economy without a way in which to control the coronavirus will lead to economic damage and to significant loss to human life. Osterholm states that the coronavirus cannot be let to spread freely, as it will lead to many deaths and the effective closure of health systems. Osterholm also declares that a plan is needed to go forward.
What is, however, staggering, is that there is still no coherent national plan over 60 days after President Trump announced a national emergency because of COVID-19. According to Jeremy Konyndyk, a representative of the Center for Global Development, the measures are not supposed to last forever but are rather meant to act like thinking time while the next phase is decided.
The president’s administration, however, did nothing with this pause. Over the course of the past two months, The US should have ramped up quarantine infrastructure, contact tracing and testing, thus making the end of lockdown and a transition to normal life safe, just like many fellow countries did. What Trump has decided to, however, is to portray the president in front of the people, without doing the actual job that comes with it. He neglected his duties, thus making America’s progress against the pandemic irrelevant, even after the economy has been driven into crisis by the lockdown.
This paper has been published on Vox.com.