Many of you are aware I have been posting ongoing news on the coronavirus pandemic. Nothing political – just the facts from expects. Leave the politics (all sides) out of this. The current crisis however does point out several things. First – experts matter and when experts are used for pawns to meet a political agenda, or allow themselves to be, it undermines public trust. In the time of crisis, the reason you have experts is that they have knowledge the general public does not. That is when you need them. And why we need to train experts for the future, not belittle their value.
It also points out how over the last 40 years the press have become less about news and more reality television. This started with Fox – who edged its way into the market by sensationalizing things. Others have followed suit, at least to a degree (if you have been around a while, you know this to be true – if not talk to someone who has). That makes it much harder to convey a consistent, correct message to the public in times of crisis. Hence the differences among states in the actions taken versus the experts’ recommendations.
A recent article in the Atlantic that I posted noted that the southern states are likely to be hit harder, and later with the coronavirus peak because they have not followed expert recommendations, while California and Washington are faring better (time will tell). The concern then is reinfection of areas where the virus was under control from the “late-blooming” areas of the country. The south is perhaps less “ready” and has less access to medical facilities that larger states with larger metropolitan areas. The scale of New York and in the future, Florida, will loom large, but the percentages of people impacts in the south, are projected to be far greater, which will in turn have major economic challenges for an already challenges area of the country.