Tell it to SunStar: US politics, Covid-19 vaccine

Jesus Sievert
·2 min read

IT’S bad enough that Trump refuses to concede that he suffered a decisive loss in his quest for reelection, thus putting the presidential transition process in limbo, but it is even worse that the outgoing president has remained silent and has done nothing at all in controlling the virus spread that is ravaging their country, as this is written.

I feel bad about it because America is no longer the country that we have known it to be where democratic ideals are cherished and democratic institutions are respected. One even doubts now if America has still the moral ascendancy to lead the world and sanctimoniously preach the tenets of freedom, justice and democracy or even have the audacity to send members of Congress to third world countries to observe its election process after what the whole world have just witnessed the Trump-era election shenanigans.

But that is neither here or there. What I am just saying is that with president-elect Biden at the helm of US government there is some measure of hope that he is willing to take the pandemic seriously, as he already did, by creating a team of legitimate scientific and medical experts to lead in battling one of the worst public-health crises in world history and sending a strong message that science and not politics would dictate the fight against the virus.

It is simply unbelievable, as it is ridiculous and an embarrassment, that politics and political survival have been prioritized over and above the well being of every American. By sacrificing science-based practices to prevent the deadly spread of the virus America now leads in number of Covid-19 deaths worldwide – 248,585, as I write. If this is not failed leadership and an utter lack of empathy by the Trump administration, I do not know what is.

What is heartening, however, is that after waiting on a Covid-19 vaccine for months, pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and BioNTech announced that it has a vaccine that it says proved 90% effective in people who aren’t known to have the coronavirus, as a result of its trials so far. The company says it tested the vaccine on 43,538 people in six countries, with no serious safety concerns found. BioNTech is a German company working with US-based Pfizer to develop a new vaccine. Other promising vaccine producers are AstraZeneca, Sanofi-GSK, Janssen Pharmaceutica NV, CureVac and Moderna..

It may be relieving to know, although the reality is that being in a third world country, the waiting will be painfully longer, but still I am optimistic that the Biden presidency will lead the world in ensuring that the vaccines are safe, effective and distributed efficiently and equitably so that third world country allies can also avail themselves of it.

Suffice it to say that the Biden presidency is a whiff of fresh air replacing the rancorous and fetid Trump-era presidency.