Sunday, Sept. 13, 2020 | 2 a.m.
There is no such thing as a vacation during the time of coronavirus.
There is no need to explain, just as there is no need to describe the sad fact that far too many people do not have jobs from which they can take a needed vacation.
And until earlier this past week, the reasons for the terrible state of affairs that have driven the United States to the brink of health and middle American economic collapse were, as is often the case, muddled in the murkiness of our broken politics.
In short, the political divide that has opened wide the chasm of credibility that exists between two very different Americas has prevented the American people from enjoying the simple understanding that having and knowing the truth is a bedrock of our democracy.
I had hoped that this first column following my Labor Day return would be just to thank 27 incredible guest columnists — business, social, civic and academic thought leaders in our community — who shared their ideas, passions and visions with Sun readers during August.
Just as I was hoping to avoid —for as long as sanity would allow — the need to discuss whatever the next presidential outrage would be against the American people, our institutions and our values.
While I believe I have shared the unprecedented angst that Donald Trump’s election has caused most Americans on a daily basis since January 2017, even I realize there are other issues to write about, the problems that could be fixed and which might be more beneficial than screaming down a dark hole!
That was my hope. I was wrong.
Even though a majority of Americans know that every time President Trump opens his mouth he lies to us, there is a smaller but more vocal group of Americans who has faith in his every word and believes that he is the political Second Coming. Pitting fact versus false faith appears to be the underlying contest of this presidential election.
By now every sentient human being in this country knows that Trump flat out lied to us when he told Americans that COVID-19 was no worse than the flu, that it posed no significant threat to our health and safety, that it would miraculously disappear in a matter of weeks and that there was no need to alter our lifestyles in any way to protect ourselves and our loved ones.
We now know for certain what many of us knew instinctively —Trump was lying!
But that wasn’t enough. He knew that COVID-19 was five times more deadly than the flu and he knew that it was airborne. And, yet, he vilified our country’s governors (Democrats) who ordered shutdowns and mask-wearing to stem the pandemic in their own states and praised those governors (remarkably, GOP acolytes) who flaunted common sense and refused to protect their own constituents.
The result? As of this past week there are over 190,000 American dead and well over 6 million Americans who have been infected and whose future health outcomes may be forever impaired as a result of the infections.
Does anyone think that had Trump told us the truth in February, there wouldn’t have been far fewer deaths and infections in this country? Does anyone think for a moment that there would have been any reluctance ( even for those in red hat country) to wearing a mask and socially distancing if Trump had told us the disease spread through the air and that it was as deadly as he knew it to be?
Of course not. The only question that remains is why did he lie?
To that I say, it does not matter.
Nothing justifies those lies that caused the deaths of countless thousands of Americans — deaths that did not have to happen.
Trump the candidate famously told the country that he could shoot someone on Fifth Avenue in New York and not lose one vote. And, so far, it appears he was right. But his deceitful hands are now all over close to 200,000 deaths. Should he not lose at least one vote?
The facts are clear and unequivocal. By President Donald Trump’s own words, he has proved himself a clear and present danger to the people of the United States of America.
He took an oath to protect us against people just like him.
Brian Greenspun is editor, publisher and owner of the Sun.