Here is the front page of The New York Times today. It is a listing of a few hundred names of the nearly 100,000 Americans who have died from COVID-19. There’s more inside the paper. There’s a more readable PDF version, plus an online version too.
Numbers alone cannot possibly measure the impact of the coronavirus on America, whether it is the number of patients treated, jobs interrupted or lives cut short. As the country nears a grim milestone of 100,000 deaths attributed to the virus, The New York Times scoured more than 1,000 obituaries and death notices honoring those who died. None were mere numbers.
For me, this is a massive rebuke of Trump’s selfish base who signal wearing a mask is for “pussies.” The people who refuse to wear a mask because they believe it makes them weak or they think the virus isn’t dangerous, or that the people more likely to die are older, poorer, and non-white is appalling. They should be ashamed of themselves.
More Americans have died from COVID-19 than during the Vietnam War and a third of the number who died in World War II. It has only been five months. What will it be in another five months? What will our government do? Who will help the millions who are out of work? Who will help the small businesses, the schools, the manufacturing, the factories, the essential workers dying, the caregivers dying? Certainly not this cold, callous, uncaring, and indifferent fat ignoramus who plays golf while thousands die daily.
Personally, I think this image I saw first from Patton Oswalt is more fitting.