Lockdown or no lockdown? There can’t be a middle path in the world’s fight against coronavirus. Unfortunately, the world’s only superpower – the United States — seems to be sending ambivalent, if not confusing, signals in its approach to take on the pandemic. The US, currently helpless, devastated and in a state of mourning over pile of dead bodies mounting, is still caught in a Catch-22 situation. It faces the dilemma whether to open its economy to let businesses limp back to normalcy and create jobs, or to save human lives by going in for total lockdown, as India under Prime Minister Narendra Modi has done. While some State Governors flex their political powers to “re-open America”, much to the dislike of President Donald Trump, majority Americans, still not out of trauma of losing their family members, are in no mood to see more deaths. Already there are protests and campaigns building up to “open up America”.’
Georgia Governor Brian Kemp’s decision to reopen to “overcome economic gloom” is something in contrast President Donald Trump’s line. Trump feels that states should wait a bit longer as “safety has to predominate,” as he said in response to Georgia’s stand. Incidentally, Georgia has had more than 20,000 cases of Covid-19 and has seen more than 800 deaths. Reasons cited to open up America in the name of putting economy back on track are valid. But can the US, currently on top of the corona death toll table, afford to take the risk? If one argues in the name of economic recovery and adding employment, then one should also factor in cost of human lives being lost daily on American soil. Can America bear the weight of those dead bodies?
America would not have lost so many lives had it acted timely and decisively. Economy is only for people and not viceversa. Weigh the two and probably those behind the “open America bogey” will get the answer. And if one believes, Dr. Anthony Fauci, the US government’s top infectious-disease expert, then being indoors for a while is most “profitable business”. Fauci was quoted as saying, “Unless we get the virus under control, the real recovery economically is not going to happen.”