Coronavirus cases and deaths are going through the roof.
Unemployment is skyrocketing. Some people barely have any food to put on their table this Thanksgiving. This is the America we live in 2020.
In a recent speech, President-elect Joe Biden asked for solidarity. This request seems more like fiction than reality, with Mr. Trump focusing on changing the election results and the Congress and federal government being effectively AWOL.
The transition of power is still stalled by the GSA which refuses to provide the Biden team with access to essential files required for a smooth transition process. While the American population is downing in debt, unemployment and uncertainty, the main country leaders seem to have entirely different concerns.
Trump and Biden, at opposite poles
With each day that passes Trump is getting further and further away from his dream of being re-elected. However, he is equally determined to challenge election results in multiple states – and many Republicans are supporting his legal attacks.
His only recent, notable action, was attending a Gettysburg voter fraud ‘hearing.’ Although Rudy Giuliani, his attorney, had just been exposed to a person infected with COVID-19, he attended the event anyway to witness Trump’s raging speech.
From the courts to Democrats, the current U.S. President verbally attacked every institution and group who dismissed his claims of voter fraud. Shortly after this memorable moment, Trump attended a West Wing meeting with Pennsylvania Republican members. According to CNN reports, Trump attempted to convince two leading Michigan GOP state lawmakers of the illegitimacy of the election results in Michigan… again. His request was denied – again.
Biden, on the other hand, is working on building a new government that will become effective as soon as he officially takes office. According to his recent declarations, the President-elect is planning to focus on the main issues concerning Americans this time of the year – hunger included. Although these plans seem considerate towards us, the American citizens, it will take plenty of time and resources to turn them into reality.
What will we do until then?
The food and work crisis
Recent statistics showed that weekly jobless claims have reached 778,000 – which is more than three times their average recorded pre-pandemic.
Future first lady Jill Biden has spent the past few days delivering grocery bags at a food bank in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware (where she and her family are spending Thanksgiving). This gesture points out to a huge problem out country is facing right now: too many unemployed (or underpaid) Americans whose financial stability was completely shattered by the pandemic.
The situation is so concerning that, as Vice President-elect Kamala Harris recently tweeted, many food banks are barely keeping up with the increasing demand this time of the year.
Washington Post recently conducted a survey of Census Bureau data from late October and early November. According to the report, 1 in 8 Americans said they didn’t have enough food to eat in the previous week.
Many of these families were doing just fine before the pandemic. It’s the first time some of them are asking for help from a food bank.
Kellie O’Connell, CEO of Lakeview Pantry in Chicago, says many families are simply ashamed to ask for help – but they have no other option. Now, even more people are coming to request something to put on their Thanksgiving table.
Unfortunately, this is nothing but a tragic hallmark of the wretched situation in our country.
‘No one should go hungry in America.’ – Kamala Harris, Vice-President elect
A dark future ahead
I wish I could tell you everything will get better.
However, as the Holiday season approaches, things only seem to get worse.
Specialists estimate that another 12 million people will lose their expanded unemployment benefits offered by federal relief packages (previously passed in March). What’s worse, there’s no sign of a new round of federal stimulus anytime soon, cutting off the only source of income for some American families.
With our current president refusing to acknowledge his opponent’s victory, we now have a divided nation who lacks a single White House leader to turn to.
Unless it’s solved soon enough, the crisis can have a serious negative impact on coronavirus vaccine distribution.
Remember the chaos created at the beginning of the pandemic? This spring, local leaders ended up basically bidding against each other to make up for the lack of ventilators and healthcare workers’ protective equipment.
Fast-forward to November and we’re already facing a raging top state health officer from Illinois whose request of 400,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses was already denied by the federal government.
Trump’s advice may skyrocket COVID cases
While Washington is trying to regain balance politically, the rest of the country is about to face one of the biggest conglomerates of superspreader events yet recorded.
On November 25th, at 10 p.m., the John Hopkins University reported 178,752 new coronavirus cases and 2,207 deaths. This was a hard hit following 2,100 deaths reported a day before – the highest single-day number since spring.
Dr. Jonathan Reiner, former medical team adviser at the White House, believes the upcoming Thanksgiving gatherings could turn this holiday into ‘the mother of all superstar events.’
In recent statements, President Donald Trump encouraged people to gather and spend Thanksgiving together – an advice that comes in contrast with CDC’s recommendation of avoiding public gatherings and maintaining social distancing.
“I encourage all Americans to gather in homes and places of worship, to offer a prayer of thanks to God for our many blessings.” – President Donald Trump