Sunday, July 5, 2020

The Pandemic Duo: Numb and Number

            Where is Mike Pence today to tell everybody it's all under control? Come out, come out, wherever you are, people.

            Not to go all InfoWars here, but I'm going to offer a conspiracy theory: Everywhere Pence visits, COVID cases spike. Is he our super-spreader?

            Where is Donald Trump today? What workplace has he contaminated with his unchecked thermal breath?

            He's done nasal swabs. Maybe he will breathe on a week's worth of short ribs.

            Trump clearly thought he met his monthly quota simply by contaminating Tulsa. Yes, but it's July.

            Remember Tulsa? Sorry, we can't get Tulsa out of our heads – the stupidity of cramming people together sans masks, campaign attendants frantically removing stickers on seats that advised six-feet separation.

            Turns out the MAGA regulars had all the elbow room anyone would desire.

            I heard Trump's surgeon general speak this morning on TV. Talk about a non-essential job. He knows whatever he says, his boss will do the opposite.

            Trump says he needs no face covering because he's clean of the virus. The quintessential editorial cartoon depicting Pence reveals that he needs no facemask because he has no face.

            They are the face of the Republican Party, welcome mat for the novel coronavirus.

            Infected or no, if Trump were an actual leader who had a shred of compassion for people suffering and dying, he'd be the first to don a mask, like Joe Biden has done.

            I don't know what the focus groups are finding in honing Biden's campaign slogans, but I would like to nominate something he's said about the chief obligation of a president, and that is a "duty to care." Print that sucker and stick it in some front lawns.

            Which brings us back to all those things health professionals say we should do if we really want the economy back.

            As for those bleeping face coverings, two imperatives commend them: (1) actual protection – you know, "duty to care" (2) and modeling -- you know, showing you give a fig about doing the right thing.

            The most ridiculous claim made by those eschewing social distancing and other measures is that such things restrict their freedom. Dr. Payal Kohli, a cardiologist who appears on Denver television to discuss health issues, has an apt response.

            She calls the mask "a symbol of freedom," a means toward mobility and some normalcy in a very abnormal time.

            How we get the economy going again is listening to health professionals -- not Trump, not Larry Kudlow.

            Commentator John Pavlovitz, who has had a laser focus on Trump idiot-ology from the start, writes of the "cultic adoration" that has caused people to refuse to wear masks because "to do so would mean (Trump) was wrong all along and that they were lied to and that we are in grave danger."

            Which we are. The numbers don't lie. The Pandemic Duo lies.

            Watch as the cult now tries to say that this disease isn't so much of a problem because not as many people are dying of COVID-19, percentage-wise, compared to infection rates.

            Well, hear from those who've had the disease and didn't die. Anyone who continues to equate this to the flu deserves a "been-there, done that" dose. You first, Rush Limbaugh.

            In the midst of this, said Joe Biden, "We don't need a cheerleader, Mr. President. We need a president."

            Biden also might have said we need a president and vice president with certifiable nerve endings.

            "I'll show him," thought Trump. "I'll go to Mount Rushmore for fireworks."

Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: jyoungcolumn@gmail.com.

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Stupidity spread in droplets

            Here we go, a slide down a razor blade of more death and disruption.

            This against a foe we know how to beat.

            New York is beating it. Europe is beating it. Australia is beating it. But vast swaths of the United States are getting their cans kicked.

            Why? Because greed and stupidity remain even more immutable than COVID-19.

            Let's acknowledge others getting their cans clobbered: Donald Trump and his droid army.

            They have demonstrated that "getting the economy rolling again" means revving up ambulances and hearses. Move 'em up, head 'em out.

            How many months of sacrifice by how many people since March? How many billions of dollars in sustenance for businesses and workers sidelined by the disease? And the curve that was flattening now is fattening -- again.

            As the meme goes: They say you can't fix stupid. You can't quarantine it, either.

            Don't wear masks. Don't social-distance. Smirk at testing's role. Aerosolize those thoughts and prayers. Karaoke Night is Thursdays as always.

            No, this is not how to "get the economy rolling again." This is how to return to lockdowns and swamped hospitals.

            Back during the AIDS crisis, much was made of Patient Zero, whose wanton sexual activities made him a super-spreader.

            Who is Patient Zero of this pandemic? Clinicians are certain to identify Texas Lt. Gov. Patrick.

            Not that he has the virus (not that he knows), but he was among the first to promote the social disease by which unnecessary suffering is certain to endure.

            Patrick's line, "There's more important things than living, and that's saving the economy," is being bronzed in the halls of Texas hospitals.

            Of course, he was speaking of the most vulnerable among us who might die. Disposable. Distractions. Data points. Impediments to GOP erotica -- any uptick in GDP.

            Speaking of data: Today's poll numbers show Trump should be reserving a Fuhrerbunker in the Alps for the autumn. Chief among previous supporters fleeing his spell are those over 65.

            Why, oh, why? Could it be that 127,000 deaths and counting into this pandemic, Trump invariably opts for political posturing and campaign-ad framing over medical science and common sense?

            Older Americans tend to listen to doctors. Trump doesn't.

            Oh, wait. Associated Press reports that the administration was recruiting "pro-Trump" physicians to go on television and tell viewers it's wise to rev the economy as quickly as possible.

            Where are those physicians? Any in Texas right now? Florida? Arizona?

            Older Americans, the ones whom the party of Trump and Patrick considers to be cannon fodder, are turning to the party of Biden, the leaders taking this pandemic seriously.

            The Democrats said this week they don't need to cram a convention hall for the purpose of wearing funny hats and sharing spittle. Their national convention will be virtual.

            The Republican National Convention simply will be contagious, and not in terms of enthusiasm.

            In a New York Times commentary on why increasing numbers of older voters have turned away from Trump -- political scientist Rudy Teixeira cites the "ostentatious concern with reopening the economy rather than preventing deaths among the most vulnerable."

            The concern is not limited to the aged. In a New York Times/Siena College poll showing Biden leading Trump nationwide by 14 points, a double-digit majority says the federal government's priority "should be to limit the spread of the coronavirus, even if it hurts the economy."

            This must be disappointing to Dan Patrick and the Chief Poser. For as we are seeing, not controlling the virus has undermined the two chief objectives of the Republican Party – to boost the economy for the most comfortable among us, and to make Donald Trump look good.

            Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: jyoungcolumn@gmail.com.

Monday, June 22, 2020

Glock-Man takes on antifa

            It was a small misunderstanding.  A little thing, really.

            The two men were prone on the ground face-first, fearing for their lives. A man with two Glocks and the tactical vest had 'em there. He was sure they were antifa.

            Leave it to the media to make a big thing out of this: the fact that they were not antifa but roofing salesmen walking the streets of Loveland, Colo., wearing pandemic facial coverings, wearing company logos on their polo shirts, carrying clipboards and company pamphlets.

            Also, the media made a big deal out of the fact that the one who is black, a member of the Colorado State University football team, had been secured by the man's knee to his neck.

            Big overreaction by the media.

            As President Trump has advised, we should be on the lookout for antifa. They (it?) could be anywhere.

            Glock-man Scott Gudmundsen was doing his job as a patriotic citizen. Why should a court order him to explain this to a shrink?

            What about a man's freedom to express himself with his carbine? That's Amendments 1 and 2.

            I know; a few who don't watch Fox News ask, "What the 'fa' is antifa?"

            What and where and who? Tell us where it is, so we can smite it and them.

            Well, as Donald Rumsfeld once explained about weapons of mass destruction, antifa is there, and there, and over there.

            So, yeah, what is this antifa? Is it the antifa? Is it an antifa? Capitalized or no? Anywhere, everywhere or nowhere?

            The failing Washington Post sent out one of its two-bit, no-talent reporters, Isaac Stanley-Becker, with his worthless doctorate in history from Oxford, to ask.

            His conclusion: Though antifa may actually be a thing, it isn't much of one. Par for the course, lamestreamers.

            After interviewing a raft of experts about domestic extremism, he reported, "The group the Trump administration has labeled a menace has mostly been non-existent."

            You mean Trump was misleading us when he said a bony 75-year-old white man pushed to the ground at a Black Lives Matter protest in Buffalo was not doing antifa's bidding by menacing --"scanning" -- police with his – um -- cell phone?

            Can't be true. Trump always levels with us, he and Fox News. Don't dare call this just another example of right-wing hysteri-"fa."

            Oh, sure, Fox on occasion has taken a speck of something and built an interstate with it, but it's all for a good cause.

            In 2008 with the threat of a black president looming over our nation, Fox News constructed a mortal threat out of a near-handful of Black Panthers – well, two -- who showed up at a Philadelphia polling station looking intimidating. Fox News devoted 95 news segments to the matter.

            That paled in comparison to the white rage over brown people coming our way in 2018 via a Central American "caravan" awash with criminals – 300, count 'em.

            Inquiring, pain-in-the-patootie reporters tried to apply math to the claim. They asked the Trump administration to provide a list or actual evidence. But why provide evidence if straight-shooters like Sean Hannity will devote sufficient air time without it?

            And now with marches about racial justice involving a goodly sample of multi-colored bodies, set your binoculars on the advance of antifa, the formless foe.

            Sen. Chuck Schumer calls the whole thing an attempt to frame legitimate protests "as terrorist threats to justify unnecessary federal, even military, intervention." What a snowflake.

            "Antifa." It means anti-fascist. And what is fascism? It's a leader who puts himself above the people, who uses the military to bolster himself and his ego, who elevates the unholy to the holy and his kin above the whole.

            Well, I'm against that. My wife is against that. So are the sons we've raised and all their friends and mine. So, Glock-man has a legitimate fear. Antifa is everywhere.

            Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: jyoungcolumn@gmail.com.

 

Sunday, June 14, 2020

Pandemic? Black holocaust? Ah, just forget it

            It was beyond horrific: Lungs collapsing under the weight of their own resistance. Vibrant and alive by morning. Dead by night.

            The influenza pandemic of 1918 did something else ever etched into the minds of those who cared for the dying. In many cases it turned white people black. Race: indecipherable.

            Of course, at the time people couldn't see a virus, either.

            Not that many know about this. History books have been Cloroxed of it.

            The college history book that long had been my go-to source for maps and charts and battle lines? Not a word about influenza. Another book on the shelf about transformative American moments? Zip.

            Could someone have thought scrubbing from memory something that killed 50 million worldwide would make us safer?

            Scrub, scrub, scrub. Is this how history will remember our moment in time?

            Speaking of race: I doubt one in 100 Americans knew of what many are learning this week about a horrific date in Tulsa, Okla., as Donald Trump plans a COVID-soup rally there.

            On June 1, 1921, a white mob gathered to lynch a young black man but met a black group assembled to protect him. Instead, the mob turned its fury on Tulsa's Greenwood District, a thriving hub of black-owned businesses known as "Black Wall Street."

            In a hail of gunfire, a blur of flame, Black Wall Street burned to the ground. Three hundred died. Vibrant by morning, dead by night.

            I'm a maven of history. I hadn't heard of this until the nation was forced once again to confront its heritage of racism as people took to the streets to support Black Lives Matter.

            Oh, the land mines placed on the paths of those who rejoiced their freedom one bright June day in 1865.

            To them, slavery's end gave them humanity. To others, it took away control.

            So many stories swept under the rug: Take "Ax Handle Saturday" in Jacksonville, Fla., where in August the Republicans plan to convene a COVID cocktail party to nominate Trump.

            There in another August, 1960, a group of black youths marched peacefully to protest all-white lunch counters. They were met by Klansmen and their sympathizers who chased them down the street, eventually turning ax handles and baseball bats on any black person they saw.

            So much of the violence in incidents like this was attributed to "agitators" and "infiltrators," when it really came down to privileged and empowered white people wanting any reason at all to crack heads. This tendency pertains to too many police officers.

            It was somewhat of an abomination to hear news media reports continually say that the peaceful protests worldwide were about the death of one man at the hands of police. Hence, efforts by the MAGA crowd to make George Floyd appear worthy of harsh treatment at the hands of police.

            Stop it. The protests aren't about George Floyd. They are about generations of George Floyds.

            What has happened with Floyd's murder is that the viral video of his death while face-down on the pavement, his neck under the knee of a white policeman, hands in his pockets and pressing, and pressing, cannot be Cloroxed.

            It has caused us all to stop and ponder injustices that have gone on since the first slave ships arrived on our continent: America's original sin.

            All those 400 years later, have we learned? Some haven't. They are still clinging to the power they consider a birthright and the monuments for which they stand.

            Oh, did someone mention a pandemic? We're having one, and it's stunning how closely the actions of our president match the play-it-down, way-down actions of President Wilson in 1918 as disease killed so many. Wilson had World War I to worry about. Donald Trump has his re-election to worry about.

            Alfred Crosby, author of "America's Forgotten Pandemic," says that for those who experienced the 1918 disaster it was "in the individual memory" for life, "but it's not in the collective memory."

            That helps explain why, of course, we now see that very history repeated today.

            Individual memory, not collective memory.

            Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: jyoungcolumn@gmail.com.

 

Sunday, June 7, 2020

Brave walk from bunker to Bible-op

            Accentuate the positive.

            Donald Trump had peaceful protesters gassed, had them flash-banged and chased by mounted park rangers, to clear his path for a two-bit photo-op. But at least he didn't take a golf cart.

            He didn't have his coterie of sycophants lay palm fronds before him. He didn't ride the Popemobile.

            No, pluckily negotiating the grit of a paved walking surface and the traction of God-given wingtips, Trump made it to St. John's Episcopal Church. There he held a Bible to the sky, much like a stunned first-time fisher-person for whom a -- whatcha call it? A carp? – had taken his hook.

            As my son says, "What a poser."

            All I can say as a citizen is that I'm glad someone had a camera.

            Once again, Americans were reminded of what a venal and out-of-touch figure has infested the White House for the last 3.5 years.

            The day before he had been in the White House bunker so as not to feel the hot breaths of real Americans concerned about real injustices.

            His explanation of this was fascinating. At first he said he hadn't been in the bunker. Then he said he was there for a tour.

            "Well, as you can see, Mr. President, this is a wall, and this is a wall. We have two more walls just like this. And this is the door through which you came."

            At this point we can hope at minimum that Donald Trump knows where the door is.

            He should not be where he is. He has no concept of the job for which he applied. The job was well explained by Joe Biden the other day in a speech that showed what it means to have actual human representation at the highest levels of government.

            A president "has a duty to care," said Biden.

            Over the last few months Trump has indicated with every word and action, "Not my job."

            Not a hint of compassion about thousands of deaths of marginalized people struggling through a pandemic. Nor about oppression that strains the lives of many people of color.

            He cares about the stock market. He cares about the GDP. He cares about the meat supply. He wonders if anything will save his bacon.

            Streets molten with rage, two Politico headlines said it in so many words:

            "Racial wounds rip open under a president with a history of exploiting them."

            "Trump confronts a culture war of his own making."

            Let's not interpret "confronts" in this case as one might a plumber who arrives for a burst pipe. Trump has confronted this situation much like one of the ProudBoys or any provocateur who flies a Confederate flag from his pickup aerial outside a Juneteenth gathering.

            With his inflammatory tweets and Hitler-like threats of deploying the military against American citizens, observed Trump's one-time secretary of defense, James Mattis (to be dittoed by ex-chief of staff John Kelley):

            "Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people – does not even pretend to try. Instead, he tries to divide us."

            If "law and order" Republicans are concerned about people flying off the handle, they should look at their chief role model.

            ABC News has documented 54 instances where perpetrators invoked Trump's name in "violent acts, threats of violence and allegations assault."

            Enough media and law enforcement witnesses were outside the gates of the White House that day to know that the protests Trump quelled with horses and gas were peaceful and not the "terrorists" former White House attorney John Dowd called them. Of course, safe in his shell, Trump shared the remarks by Twitter.

            Oh, well. You can take the man out of the bunker, but you can't take the bunker out of the man.

            Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: jyoungcolumn@gmail.com.

 

Sunday, May 31, 2020

'Jane Roe,' Donald Trump and other 'pro-life' cons

           To certain fanatics who call themselves "pro-life," the means always justify the end.

            The end of a woman's right to choose, that is.

            Those means include specious "informed consent" laws to promote myth and misinformation.

            Those means include surreptitious and illegal efforts to entrap women's clinic workers into saying something scandalous.

            Those means include harassing women and threatening physicians who perform a constitutionally protected procedure.

            To a few even more fanatical fanatics, the means are torching clinics and killing health-care workers. Yes, to advance "pro-life" ends.

            But few of the disturbing things done by this movement match what we have learned about Norma McCorvey's role in it.

            McCorvey was the Texas single mom whose quest to get an abortion (she ended up having and giving up the baby) resulted in the Roe vs. Wade decision that stripped states of the power to regulate abortion in the first trimester.

            We learn about her story, and how she became a pawn in the anti-abortion game, in the FX documentary "AKA Jane Roe."

            We find out that a massively touted anti-abortion conversion by "Jane" was in fact a business transaction -- nearly half a million dollars over time.

            Yes, McCorvey put on an act for income. Struggling to pay her bills and always an unreliable narrator -- she once claimed that her third pregnancy was the result of rape, and later said it was not -- she found a way to live comfortably at the hand of Operation Rescue leader Flip Benham – "a trophy for the movement," says the movie's narrator.

            In fact, McCorvey went to her grave believing the state should stay out of abortion to the extent that the Supreme Court ruled it 1973. Yet for years she allowed people to think that she'd made a massive conversion against a woman's right to choose.

            The truth was in her final interview: "I took their money, and they put me out in front of the cameras and told me what to say, and that's what I'd say."

            Digesting this, I thought of a key figure in the anti-abortion movement by the name of Donald Trump, who also likes public attention.

            Not just a figure – the messiah, the chosen one, sent from above, via escalator.

            The movement will accept any means Trump employs as he clutches the reins of power. Any and all.

            When he said, "I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody" and not lose supporters, the movement said, "Count us in."

            Ah, but Trump has always been the con. He is documented to have supported abortion rights and to have practiced no faith whatsoever. When did that change?

            My explanation: It changed when right-wing Svengali Steve Bannon sat him down to explain the path a Republican must take to get anywhere politically these days.

            Kiss the ring of the religious right. Keep kissing. Don't stop. Don't think. Just kiss.

            Of course, save some slobber for the gun lobby, Big Energy (don't forget "beautiful coal"), big business, anything big.

            For the blue-collar types, offer empty promises to bring back manufacturing. You can't keep those promises, but do, do.

            The one promise you can keep should you thread the needle and become president is to add to the Supreme Court jurists who please the religious right.

            It doesn't matter that you are a full-time biblical charlatan, that you use your position in front of news cameras to lie daily. Just keep kissing those rings.

            McCorvey believed in abortion rights but arrived at a financial arrangement with the other side that kept a roof over her head. For Trump, such accommodations helped put over his head the roof on 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

            Toward the end of "AKA Jane Roe," the narrator borrows from the New Testament to reflect on the presumptively godly who dispense with ethics: "What does it profit a man if he should gain the whole world but lose his soul?"

            Apparently it all depends on what ends that man has in mind.

            Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: jyoungcolumn@gmail.com.

Monday, May 25, 2020

Baseless blather on voting by mail

            If you want Baby Trump to go full diaper rash, mention an alternative to risking one's life at the polls.

            Rash was the word when Trump threatened Michigan and Nevada with losing federal funds when they took steps to make it possible for more people to vote safely in the Pandemic Election.

            Oh, my, the tantrum. Bring the talcum.

            Trump called it the "Great Voter Fraud scenario."

            Really? Michigan and Nevada would call it the Safe-Voting Scenario.

            So do Colorado, Washington, Hawaii, Utah and Oregon, which have vote-by-mail systems in place.

            Many others states are moving in that direction, or at least moving to liberalize their processes to allow more voters to participate by mail.

            Set aside the fact that Trump's blast aimed at Michigan was false. Michigan didn't "illegally" send out mail-in ballots. It sent out applications.

            (Side note: What a great advertisement for Michiganders to fill out that application. Well-played, Sir. So much accomplished in one Tweet.)

            Let's focus on the blather that brands vote by mail as ripe for fraud.

            I vote by mail. Colorado has been doing it for years. In the 2016 election it found only 48 cases of fraudulent voting out of 3 million votes cast. Put that in your pipe, Mr. Partisan Schemer, and smoke it at a safe distance away from me.

            Demonizing vote-by-mail (which Trump and Melania have done absentee from Florida) is just one more front in the Republican Party's endless war on voter participation.

            Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has a serious case of posterior redness over a federal court ruling that could make it possible for all Texans to vote by mail.

            U.S. District Judge Fred Biery expressed concerns about the safety of voters and said the right to vote "should not be elusively based on the whims of nature."

            Texans of all ages should be offended that their duly elected representatives would risk voters' lives to hew to debunked concerns about mail-in ballots.

            Of course, such issues have never been the Republican Party's true concern. They have turned to any trick in the book to tamp down voting, in particular to keep marginalized people from voting.

            So-called voter I.D. laws are demonstrably aimed at this very objective.

            U.S. District Judge Nelda Gonzales Ramos ruled in 2017 that Texas' strict voter I.D. requirements discriminated against black and brown voters.

            Paxton's hind quarters grew damp about that ruling as well. The thing is, Republicans really can't argue that their voter I.D. designs discriminate against the poor and people of color. That's their whole objective.

            Thus far, however, a Supreme Court that effectively has ceded voting rights to the states has remained true to the notion that elected officials can rig the game to their benefit, whether the matter be vote suppression or gerrymandering.

            Trump has acknowledged that lower turnout is his friend, and a higher turnout may return him to his previous career of branding scams and reality TV.

            Trump claimed that mail-in ballots "for some reason don't work out for Republicans." Again, nothing in the track record of mail-in voting that bears that out.

            In 2014 Colorado elected Republican Cory Gardner to the U.S. Senate via those horrible mail-in ballots. (Because Gardner has been a dutiful rubber stamp for the immensely unpopular Trump, Colorado is likely to retire him in November, but don't blame mail-in ballots.)

            There's no secret to all of this. Republicans know that when more people vote it benefits the Ds. When fewer people vote, it benefits the Rs.

            I would love to be proven wrong and see the Rs act in ways to increase voting by people of every stripe.

            However, when its power is on the line, trust the Republican Party to never err on the side of democracy.

            Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: jyoungcolumn@gmail.com.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Two words for Commander Trump: You first

           We are warriors, says Donald Trump. You, me -- enlistees in a war against a killer.

            In waging it, however, apparently most of us have been doing the wrong thing.

            We thought we did right by social-distancing, covering faces when out, and otherwise just staying home. Wrong.

            No, to win this war, we should lift a frosty mug at a local tavern and order the nachos. Hey-yo, Wisconsin!

            We shall fight it on the beaches. We shall fight it on the dance floors and every Karaoke Night. We shall fight it in sweaty tights at Zumba class.

            Or we shall die.

            Message to Trump from most Americans: You first.

            It took him only a few news cycles after COVID-19 started to ravage humanity to cement his rep as the most incompetent and tone-deaf president ever. Trump insists still on adding mortar to his ranking in history books.

            This is a time in history when Axl Rose, the rocker who flunked conjunctions in grade school, won an argument with Trump's man in Treasury, Steve Mnuchin.

            The Guns N' Roses lead man blasted Mnuchin on Twitter when the latter suggested that we warriors should hit the roads, "a great time for people to explore America."

            In response, the Treasury secretary tweeted of the rock star, "What have you done for America?"

            Whatever that may be, tweeted Rose, at least he bore no responsibility for tens of thousands of deaths.

At the time, the first week of May, the toll was 70,000. Those were the days.

            You might say that Axl administered a cheap shot aimed at Mnuchin and his boss. But I was doing a personal inventory the other day and determined that I am doing more to fight the virus than the very man who said he's leading the fight.

            I've done everything possible to keep my family safe.

            Other than my wife, I have not touched a family member -- or any member of the human race in three months.

            I go to no public gatherings. The only time I've been away from the safety of my home, I've kept six feet from others, per Centers for Disease Control advice.

            I get our groceries and other supplies via curbside or delivery.

            I wear a facial covering when off my property, even on walks when I encounter almost no one.  

            I've done my job as a college instructor remotely. It hasn't been easy for me or my students.

            None of these things are easy. They're just necessary. I've done my job to stop the killer.

            What has Donald Trump done?

            He dismissed the threat of the virus as it pounded at our gates.

            Now that it has arrived, he ignored much of what science says about it.

            He hears his own health advisors urge social distancing and then does just the opposite.

            He hears the CDC urge the wearing of masks and ignores it.

            He helps foment irresponsible attacks by protesters and general resistance to governors and health experts doing their best to keep people like you and me safe.

            He pooh-poohs the consequence of testing and the need for contact tracing.

            He dismisses what health professionals report, to news media he derides as "fake," about shortages of PPE and testing.

            He made federal assistance a game of patronage for his political friends and a game of "Bow to me" to others.

            He has ignored his own health experts' warnings against rushing the country back to "normal." (Sorry, folks, but that definition has changed. Check back soon for details.)

            Trump wants the economy going as soon as possible. Otherwise he will be gone as soon as possible: Nov. 3.

            But here's what the majority is saying: Not so flippin' fast with the economy. You, however, can get out now.

            Yes, Mr. President. Hustle out to the flea markets and the car shows. Shake hands like a madman.

            See how that works.

            I'm inclined to suggest that Trump convene a whole bunch of red-cap followers, packing them elbow-to-elbow sans masks.

            (Don't play into the epidemiologists' hands. If science wins, we lose. Right, folks?)

            However, that would mean more infections, more strained hospitals, more tragedy, more time to endure before the rest of us – we who have listened to scientists – can enjoy the embraces of our families.

            A recent Washington Post-Ipsos poll found that 56 percent of Americans disapprove of how Trump has handled this crisis.

            Additionally, 71 percent of Americans approve of their governors' handling of the matter. That would include comparable percentages in Wisconsin and Michigan where Trump has sided with "open now" insurgents.

            Sorry, Sir. A healthy majority is not about to risk that health to make you more electable, but you are invited to wing it alone.

            Longtime newspaperman John Young lives in Colorado. Email: jyoungcolumn@gmail.com.