Letter to the Editor

To listen to Joe Biden 220,000 Americans have died of COVID-19, and every last death is the fault of President Trump. That got me thinking: COVID-19 is a coronavirus, and so are all seasonal flus. Yes, this is deadlier, although now that we’ve learned more about how to deal with it, and who’s most vulnerable so that they can be protected, the death rate compared to the infection rate has plummeted.

For example, according to the CDC, on April 18, there were 17,080 deaths “involving COVID-19” (that includes all other co-morbidities.) On October 24, there were 1,119, despite a big rise in positive tests. Nobody is disputing that COVID-19 is much deadlier than the typical seasonal flu.

However, that doesn’t mean seasonal flus aren’t deadly, particularly to the same people COVID-19 is most likely to kill: those with serious underlying health conditions and the elderly (especially those in New York nursing homes.) So I looked up the numbers, again from the CDC: Since 2010, between 12,000 and 61,000 deaths per year can be blamed on the flu. Some years are much worse than others, but over the past decade, it’s averaged about 38,000 annually, depending on the strain, how well that year’s vaccine works and other factors.

That means that, on average, during the eight years that Obama and Biden were in office, 304,000 Americans died of seasonal flu. Why? Didn’t Obama and Biden care enough to prevent those people from dying of a virus?

If the vaccine didn’t work, then should we accuse them of incompetence or heartlessness for not coming up with one that worked fast enough? Or should we just accept that viruses happen? They pop up and spread far and wide. That’s why a video that everyone watches is said to have “gone viral.”

Some, sadly, are deadlier than others or more contagious or more resistant to vaccines, but that’s how nature works (unless the virus came out of a lab, but that’s another issue.) Nobody understands everything about viruses, and it takes time to learn enough about each new one to deal with it effectively.

Even the lockdowns started as “two weeks to flatten the curve,” simply so hospitals wouldn’t be overwhelmed by the inevitable rise in cases as it spread. That was never meant to drag on for months or even years, until a cure is found. I’m not an epidemiologist, but I do know one thing for certain: nobody ever cured a virus by pointing their finger at someone else.