Election 2020PoliticsStacy M. Brown

Is Trump So Unhinged He’s Making up Coronavirus Story to Detract from COVID-19 Effects on Blacks?

President Donald Trump’s unprecedented behavior and statements have earned him the reputation as being among America’s most unhinged presidents. Thus, it should come as no surprise that social media has recently erupted with increased skepticism following his early morning tweet on Oct. 2 that announced that both he and first lady Melania Trump had tested positive for the coronavirus.

Stinging questions of doubt included whether the announcement was meant to divert attention away from his lackluster performance in his recent debate against Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden or if he sought to garner sympathy to overcome an estimated 13-point deficit in national polls.

Many also warned that the news shouldn’t detract from the disproportionate ways in which the African-American population continues to suffer from the virus and other medical maladies.

“And if he doesn’t do something quickly, by the end of the year, 1 in 500 [African Americans] will have been killed,” Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden railed at President Donald Trump during a Sept. 29 debate at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.

In the wake of the president and first lady Melania Trump’s positive coronavirus test results, many Americans point to health disparities faced at heightened levels by Blacks in comparison to other ethnic groups.

“In 10 or 15 years from now, researchers and the general public can learn from scholarly and non-scholarly pieces as to what it was like to be a Black person in the time of COVID-19,” Tracie Jones, director of diversity and inclusion, Harvard Graduate School of Education, told the Harvard Gazette.

“It’s an important record. The racial disparities of COVID-19 are something we need to talk about as a larger community,” Jones stated.

Along with Harvard College librarian Sarah DeMott, Jones has created “Black America and COVID-19” — a library guide that aims to serve as a historical record, shedding light on the pandemic’s impact on African Americans who remain twice as likely to die from the disease as whites.

“I’m just going to say it. Trump refused to wear a mask and has downplayed COVID-19 from the beginning,” said social media maven and Washington Informer photographer Anthony Tilghman. “If the president would’ve taken COVID-19 seriously, many lives could’ve been saved.”

The Harvard research guide’s goal remains to capture the personal stories of triumph, failure or death which continue to unfold within the Black community.

“We didn’t want the ephemerality of the situation to escape,” DeMott told the Harvard Gazette. “We wanted to make sure that all those accounts didn’t disappear. We were trying to capture the feeling on the ground at the moment.”

“Unhinged” serves as a continuing series developed by The Washington Informer which seeks to chronicle the unpredictable and sometimes questionable behavior of Donald Trump, including potential instances of race-baiting, while providing closer scrutiny of multiple examples of the president’s statements or positions, proven to be false or unfounded, that have marked his presidency. 

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Stacy M. Brown

I’ve worked for the Daily News of Los Angeles, the L.A. Times, Gannet and the Times-Tribune and have contributed to the Pocono Record, the New York Post and the New York Times. Television news opportunities have included: NBC, MSNBC, Scarborough Country, the Abrams Report, Today, Good Morning America, NBC Nightly News, Imus in the Morning and Anderson Cooper 360. Radio programs like the Wendy Williams Experience, Tom Joyner Morning Show and the Howard Stern Show have also provided me the chance to share my views.

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