COVID Update October 15: We started bad but THEN we got worse. Now is our chance.

Since May 10th, when the worst of Italy and the U.S. had passed, we have had 4x the number of deaths/capita. The difference is 80,000 people gone. 1/
Everyone by this time knows what happened in the U.S. in January through March. Trump heard & ignored, the CDC failed, we lacked masks, had no testing, and we lost too many people. 2/
Our first case was the same day as South Korea’s. We started out and could have been South Korea but never contained and cane to grips with the virus. 3/
But we had another chance come May. We were on the same plane as everyone else. Europe, Asia, Canada. We had lessons we could ingest.

What were those lesson? 4/
1. We needed to make due without a vaccine for some time.
2. Until then, our best and only medicine was just not to spread the disease.
3. Acting as a whole was essential, communication was essential, clear facts were essential. 5/
4. Most of the spread was respiratory. Masks were key.
5. Because of asymptomatic spread, distancing & avoiding hot spots were key.
6. The result of inaction was death, slated towards older, sicker, POC, marginalized people.
7. Preventing deaths had a cost. 6/
The cost of preventing deaths would have to be felt somewhere: Congress supporting us. Small businesses closing. Not dining out. Investing in testing & contact tracing. Complying with new rules like mask wearing for a time.

We either pay some of those costs or pay in lives.7/
We chose the death of our fellow Americans over the costs we did not want to pay. 8/
Our national leaders played a role in this. They didn’t ask us to sacrifice, they refused to accept accountability, they promised us quick fixes, they ignored science & they lied to us.

I’m talking about Trump primarily. But one man needs people to aid and abet his crime. 9/
But he did worse. He added a culture war to our costs. He made a mask a divisive symbol instead of a a life saving one. He encouraged people to defy experts.10/
Not only did Trump refuse to keep 50 states safe, he couldn’t keep the 50,000 square feet of the White House safe. 11/
It wasn’t just a Trump. The collection of hoaxers, truthers, herd immunity-itsts, deniers, anti-maskers & anti-science ppl are a breath-taking lot.

Their neither understand immunity— no one does— nor do they place as much value on other lives as they do their own conveniences.12
The Koch Brothers funded group that’s trying to convince us that the economy must prevail over human life isn’t talking about our economy. The top 1/10 of 1% have made hundreds of billions during the pandemic with windfall profits & speculation. Expensive homes are booming.13/
The economy we care about— where small businesses hire, people sign leases, we buy cars again & travel— that requires investment in the people hurting & in testing & tracing & isolating. That’s how countries around the world manage it.14/
So Italy lost 1/4 of the people per capita as the U.S. Schools are open, cinemas are open. You have to call ahead. You have to make due with inconveniences. But not mass graves.

Italy learned. 15/
I have been asked twice today to explain the fact that Europe is now going through a rise in cases as evidence that they didn’t do it better than us. One by a Republican State Senator.

I offer her and you the following answers... 16/
Let’s assume that things in Italy got as bad as the U.S. now and forever. We lost 80,000 people in the meantime.

Second, I would rather fight one rabid dog than packs and packs of dogs. Controlling cases from a rise from 0 beats doing it rising from 50,000. 17/
I’ve done 3 interviews today about this “third wave” we are having. For the most part, is not a third wave. It is still the first.18/
As The NY Times illustrates, it is just the completion of the first wave. 19/
10% of the population infected, we are not sure about immunity, and all told 150,000 people dead that should be alive right now.

Sadly all that has come before us. We can’t change it. Here’s what we CAN do:

Start now. Save the next life. 20/
Start now. Save the next life.

Don’t let 210,000 become 310,000. Don’t insult those we’ve lost by losing more.

Every day the pandemic gives us another opportunity. 21/
Now is our chance. Now is always our chance. When it’s past us, we may never have the opportunity to save as many lives ever again. 22/
1. Don’t wait for a vaccine. We have the means to do it with cloth.
2. Don’t wait for an election. We can start now.
3. Don’t get hopeless. Hope for the people who can be saved.
4. Don’t get fatigued. That’s a luxury.
5. Help people struggling.

and... 23/
Vote like you’re signing your name to the country’s emancipation papers.
Vote like your pen has the power to save lives.
Vote because the country can be healed.
Vote because all wrongs can’t be righted but they can be accounted for. /end

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More from @ASlavitt

13 Oct
COVID Update October 13: I've been writing these for 8 months straight. I could never have imagined. I imagine you're eagerly awaiting the day when you go on Twitter & don't have to see these any more.

You deserve that and so much more... 1/
1. A pandemic election.

You deserve to hire someone for this job. Based on my time serving in government, make the decision based on compassion, competence, and someone who won't rest until Americans are safe again. 2/
2. Stress relief.

People are wound pretty tight after 8 months of this I don't care who you are. Take time to remind yourself what gives you joy in life-- likely who gives you joy in life. Don't make this feel unsustainable, like you can't exhale. Meaningful moments exist. 3/
Read 20 tweets
12 Oct
COVID Update October 10: I had a call with a Republican governor of a state in trouble and gave me a sense of where we are.

Here is what I learned...1/
1- The biggest concern is in rural communities.

90% of people in urban areas are wearing masks and spread is in better control. Rural community spread is large family & community gatherings without masks. 2/
This compares to the spring in the Northeast where spread was almost entirely in urban areas and to summer when it spread in southern states more evenly.

Governor believes masks & public health compliance are the biggest difference. 3/
Read 24 tweets
10 Oct
COVID Update October 9: It’s a bad sign that Trump couldn’t protect the single most important thing in the world from COVID-19.

Himself. 1/
Some presidents would be inclined to define their duty as to protect people around the globe. That’s not Trump.

Some would have cared about all Americans. Also not him we know. 2/
He casts aside “old people” and people with “heart conditions.”

Black and brown people people haven’t fared well. People with pre-existing conditions. 3/
Read 20 tweets
7 Oct
COVID Update October 7: Why Trump must be gone before vaccine distribution. 1/
Trump’s credibility on COVID-19 couldn’t be lower. No one trusts him any more.

COVID has blanketed our country with millions of cases.

And 1600 Superspreader Avenue has made even his most ardent supporters retract. 2/
I revise that. Some of his relatives trust him.

But they would be smart to keep their distance just to be safe.

And not leave any valuables just lying around until the debt situation is taken care of. 3/
Read 25 tweets
5 Oct
COVID Update: Trump’s closing argument: “don’t be afraid of COVID.” 1/
Now that Trump is an expert on COVID— not the book learning kind you get by reading the reports that have been presented to him for months on end— but the kind REAL people get— he has an inescapable conclusion. 2/
There’s a million people worldwide, many of whom, presented exactly the way Trump presented, and who died. 3/
Read 23 tweets
4 Oct
COVID Update October 3: Updated CDC Guidelines.

I think these may have been lightly edited. And most seem designed for Patient X.
If you get COVID and a contact tracer calls you, don’t forget you can always say you caught it from Hope Hicks.
If you have been exposed to people wih COVID, until you feel sick, carry on in close quarters with others.
Read 9 tweets

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