COVID-19 is looking very American


Designer Muna Mohamed

Opinion article with some reasons why America has high cases of COVID-19

Muna Mohamed, Writer

The United States has reported 13,605,981 cases of Coronavirus. This is more than any country in the world. John Hopkins, a University and Medicine school compares America’s cases with other countries. In their article New Cases of COVID-19 In World Countries it shows America ahead of any other major country. Also, India has a population of over 1 billion, and reported around 139,000 deaths. While America has a population of around 328 million and reported around 274,000 deaths. There are a plethora of reasons why the number of cases are so high in America. Some of the reasons involve American politics and not following Center for Disease Control guidelines.

Other continents response and measures

European countries responded to COVID-19 by implementing a pan-European crisis response package. In the World Economic Forum What we can learn from Europe’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, its states, “The European Commission (EC), European Investment Bank (EIB) and European Stability Mechanism (ESM) agreed to finance up to €540 billion to help people, businesses and countries throughout Europe, including liquidity support to companies, funding for development of treatments and vaccines, and financing for employment as well as direct and indirect healthcare costs related to the pandemic.” In Asian countries, wearing masks was already practiced and they took other measures like using CCTV footage to find close contacts of those infected. In the article, How Asian Countries Are Keeping COVID-19 Under Control, it says, “South Korean investigators sift through smartphone data, credit-card records and CCTV footage to track down close contacts of those infected.” Africa had an advantage by having a youthful population, but their quick response to COVID-19 decreased the amount of reported cases. In the Los Angeles Times Defying predictions of disaster, Africa’s coronavirus response is receiving praise, “Slightly more than 34,000 deaths have been confirmed on the continent of 1.3 billion people. Health experts point to Africa’s youthful population as a factor in why COVID-19 hasn’t taken a larger toll, along with swift lockdowns.Overall, the continents of Europe, Asia and Africa made decisions to combat the spread of the virus.

American Politics

The number of COVID-19 cases were influenced by the election. According to the New York Times The U.S Passes 4 Million Cases in November Alone, Doubling October’s Tally, “The total number of coronavirus cases in the United States for November surpassed four million on Saturday, more than double the record set in October of 1.9 million cases.” Unlike the month of October, November was host of the 2020 presidential election. Joe Biden’s victory resulted in many Americans celebrating in cities all across the country. President Trump claiming fraud has also resulted in many Americans to protest the results. The celebrations and protests of the election are a major reason why there were four million new cases in November alone. 

The pandemic failed to deter many fliers with the number passing through airports surpassing 900,000 for seven consecutive days around Thanksgiving.”

— Forbes Magazine

Furthermore, the article states, “The milestone came as Americans traveled by the millions for the long Thanksgiving weekend and amid a Black Friday that saw some store crowding, even as merchants guided customers to online sales and limit in-person shopping.” Thanksgiving is all about being surrounded by family and friends. Gathering during a global pandemic is going to have serious repercussions. According to Forbes, “The pandemic failed to deter many fliers with the number passing through airports surpassing 900,000 for seven consecutive days around Thanksgiving.Millions of Americans decided to ignore the CDC guidelines.

Ignoring the CDC guidelines and lawmakers lack of exemplary behavior

Americans ignoring the CDC guidelines and lawmakers not following their own COVID-19 rules impacted the cases of COVID-19 reported. The Centers for Disease Control states, “Celebrating virtually or with members of your own household (who are consistently taking measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19) poses the lowest risk for spread.” Instead, millions of Americans traveled to see family and increased the risk of this virus to spread rapidly. This explains why cases have been so high in America and specifically during the month of November. 

Politicians made rules that affected workers and people’s everyday lives all in the name of stopping the spread of coronavirus. According to The Washington Post, “The hypocrisy epidemic seems to spread far and wide. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) was unrepentant after getting a haircut when salons were closed in her city, while New York Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) was defiant after going to a public gym in March as New York City was shutting everything down. The article states, “ ‘I need to exercise to stay healthy and make … decisions’, he roared.” Lawmakers must follow the laws and set a good example because Americas look to them for guidance and they hold a position of power. There are more instances where politicians would break their own COVID-19 rules. Americans see this and start to not take the pandemic seriously which results in more cases.

America’s cases are so high because Americans from all walks of life decided to push COVID-19 to the side for their own reasons, which ultimately put everyone at risk. Americans need to take COVID-19 seriously, all the evidence points to COVID-19 cases getting worse. As much as people want things to go back to normal, this is the new reality.