President Trump was discharged from Walter Reed Medical Center last night and upon his return, he stood on the balcony and took his mask off in an act of boldness towards the virus’ effects on him. While he was looking out onto the White House lawn, he looked as if he was having a hard time catching his breath. Trump also posted a video to Twitter, saying that we “shouldn’t let the virus dominate us” and that COVID-19 shouldn’t scare us. The optics of his balcony show and the video are so poor and a slap in the face to the American people that have experienced the wrath that this virus has taken.
I trust that the doctors treating President Trump felt confident enough that he was okay enough to go home, despite their lack of transparency last weekend. He does seem like he’s in better shape than in days’ past. However, it was very concerning to see him appear like he is having a hard time breathing while looking out onto the White House lawn. It also makes me worried that he is not out of the woods yet with his symptoms. We all understand that this is a tricky virus. I want him back to work as much as the next person (I’m not convinced he was actually working in those pictures posted from the office at Walter Reed) so that our country can be back in safe territory again. However, I worry that his symptoms could in fact get worse as I stated in my post on Sunday night.
I thought that the moment on the balcony last night when he removed his mask was inappropriate and irresponsible to show to the American people. I understand the symbolism behind it; President Trump wanted to show his strength as a leader. However, everyone knows you’re sick. It’s not a bad thing to show that you’re a human and can be vulnerable at times. The removal of his mask has caused an outrage with people, saying that he is still contagious and could have infected others. It did not appear that there was anybody around him when he removed his mask, so that doesn’t bother me as much. What does bother me was that someone took the video for him that is now posted on Twitter and was within a short range of the president, thus potentially making them susceptible to catching COVID-19.
Speaking of the video, this seems like a slap in the face to the American people. The line that most angered me, among other parts of that video, was that he told us not to let the virus dominate us. Excuse me, sir? We have been told what to do for the last seven months by your administration with regard to the virus, lockdowns, etc. This has affected every aspect of our lives. He also mentioned that we shouldn’t let the virus scare us. We have gotten used to wearing the masks, washing our hands, etc. throughout the pandemic, which may not be as scary as we may have thought seven months ago. However, it is still a scary thought that we could contract a potentially deadly virus and there is no vaccine, cure, or anything to eliminate this. Telling the American people not to let this scare you is basically reiterating to his supporters that this is a hoax, which is extremely dangerous rhetoric. We also don’t have access to the medical care that the president does, which makes his statements unfair for the American people to hear, especially those that have been hospitalized or have succumbed to the coronavirus.
My last bone to pick with this whole situation is the comparisons that some of his sycophants have used upon him contracting the virus and his release from the hospital. While we know he is an essential employee with which we should have sympathy and wish him well to get better, I wouldn’t go as far as saying that he is “like a soldier going back into battle” (said by Jesse Watters on Fox News…congratulations on you and your wife expecting a baby, by the way). The president has been compared to a warrior as well. My God, everything he has done since he was admitted into the hospital, including his motorcade past his supporters, has been nothing but a show. I’m worried that the prioritization for photo ops instead of taking the appropriate precautions to get better will create a worse situation for our nation, which I don’t want to happen.
I implore you, Mr. President. Please stop with the photo opportunities and stay in the White House until you have been cleared by a doctor. Let yourself get better. I’m saying this as a concerned citizen.
(Picture Courtesy of Macfab Engineering)