Mostly, we want the same things: to be healthy, to work, to enjoy life — watch a parade, see our kids play ball. We don’t want to cause others harm.

Yet the Trump administration has failed us in reaching these basic goals. Trump’s chaotic mismanagement endangers our health. And those goals he embraces — a strong economy, the resumption of our “freedoms” — can’t be reached unless we are healthy.

The economy may stumble open, as Trump insists, but our economy is based on demand, and the majority won’t visit businesses unless they open safely. Georgia knows this: Restaurants opened weeks ago, but reservations are down 91% (SV Herald). If cases resurge — as predicted if we open without adequate testing, treatments or tracing — the economy will slide even further back as we again scramble to contain the virus and protect our health care system and workers.

Trump’s true priority is re-election. He gambles that a possible recovering economy will salvage November and that he can blame virus deaths on somebody else (China? The WHO? Obama?). Lacking the will or the smarts to safeguard public health, Trump encourages a new partisan divide — the false choice of health and safety versus jobs and liberty.

Yet, there is no divide. We want the same things. No one takes joy in isolation and watching savings evaporate. No one wants to fight a serious illness or lose a loved one.

We have a public health crisis requiring caution, intelligence and diligence. We need data-based, national guidelines to safely return people to work and restart our lives. Without national guidelines, we must rely on Washington state, which is taking a science-based approach to reopening. This gives us a fighting chance to both stay healthy and make a living, while causing as little harm to others as possible.

Beverly Faxon

Burlington

(1) comment

Rich A

Good letter.

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