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Wed Oct 28, 2020, 04:14 AM

Noem, Trumpism Lead to Dakotas' Massive Coronavirus Outbreak

Everyone in South Dakota needs to read Vox reporter German Lopez’s explanation of why coronavirus is almost five times as bad in the Dakotas right now as it is in the rest of the United States.

Yes, you can blame Kristi Noem:

…by not instituting government policies and allowing the public to act recklessly, North and South Dakota kept themselves vulnerable to the coronavirus. That vulnerability took a while to expose itself in two sparsely populated states with relatively little travel in and out — but once it appeared, Covid-19 has exploded, rapidly spreading across both of the Dakotas [German Lopez, “Why North and South Dakota Are Suffering the Worst Covid-19 Epidemics,” Vox, 2020.10.27].

We can also blame our own Trumpist wishful thinking:

…While touting their messages of personal responsibility, many Republicans have also downplayed the threat of Covid-19. Trump has deliberately done this — telling journalist Bob Woodward, “I wanted to always play [the coronavirus] down.” Even after his illness, Trump has tweeted, “Don’t be afraid of Covid. Don’t let it dominate your life.” He’s even mocked masks and claimed — falsely — that they’re ineffective. (In reality, the evidence for masks keeps getting stronger.)

For Trump, the goal here is obvious: If he manages to convince the public that things are okay and normal, it could boost his reelection chances. Republican lawmakers, in many ways beholden to Trump’s supporters, have by and large followed the president’s lead.

In North and South Dakota, that has seemingly translated to a predominantly Republican public going out, too often without masks, and spreading the coronavirus across the states [Lopez, 2020.10.27].

Read more: http://dakotafreepress.com/2020/10/27/noem-trumpism-lead-to-dakotas-massive-coronavirus-outbreak/

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