The coronavirus pandemic is bringing out the best in people – and the bad and the ugly.
The best is coming from front line responders, medical personnel, and many others who put themselves at risk to save lives.
Then there are President Trump, Vice President Pence, and the tireless officials and experts working around the clock to blunt the impact of the virus.
Also, the many corporations pitching in to find a vaccine, manufacture safety equipment and help stricken communities in a myriad of ways.
A welcome development is the Some Good News (SGN) Network on YouTube, anchored by actor John Krasinski, best known as “Jim” from the sitcom “The Office.”
Segments include celebrations of the bravery of health care providers, a man who sang to his wife through the window of her nursing home, and a tear jerker about neighbors lining a block with signs to welcome home a young cancer patient.
Now for the bad. At the top is the Chinese Communist Party for lying about the virus, arresting doctors who tried to issue warnings, and failing to inform the World Health Organization (WHO) for months, then blaming the United States. And then there’s the WHO itself, which was warned by Taiwanese officials about the lethality of the virus on Dec. 31, but echoed Chinese propaganda by tweeting on Jan. 14 that there is “no clear evidence of human-to-human transmission.”
Next are the jerks who exploit the crisis to advance their agenda.
Nancy Pelosi openly blames President Trump, comparing him to the pagan emperor Nero: “Don’t fiddle while people die, Mr. President.” She hints that revived impeachment proceedings will follow more House investigations.
“His denial at the beginning was deadly,” she said. Mrs. Pelosi held up the $2 trillion aid bill for a week while her minions tried to force leftwing agenda items – such as ending voter ID laws – into the package.
Joe Biden lashed out at Mr. Trump’s travel restrictions on China and later, Europe: “This is no time for Donald Trump’s record of hysteria and xenophobia.” Most nations now have restrictions.
Next on the bad list is the media, whose sensationalized coverage has helped plunge the nation into an economic meltdown.
When they’re not knocking Mr. Trump, they’re blocking him. The Washington Post, the New York Times and CNBC announced that they won’t cover his daily press briefings anymore. New York Times Executive Editor Dean Baquet said it was because of “health considerations.” Also, “the uncertain newsworthiness.” Bingo.
CNN in particular is relentlessly negative. The anchors seem giddy that the crisis has taken away Mr. Trump’s best issue – the economy.
The worst bit of fake news by CNN and other networks was blaming the president for the death of an Arizona man who, with his wife, ingested fish tank cleaner because it contained a form of chloroquine, which Mr. Trump had mentioned as possibly helping to mitigate the virus.
“CNN never mentioned that the man ate aquarium cleaner and not medicine,” reported Fox News’ Tucker Carlson. “They lied about the substantial -- in fact, the central -- facts of what happened …. Then they informed viewers that Trump was also killing people in Nigeria.”
Likewise, the media accused Mr. Trump of lying about the fatality rate. Taking issue with a World Health Organization estimate, Mr. Trump said, "I think the 3.4% is really a false number … I would say the number is way under 1%."
On March 5, CNN’s Brian Stelter accused Mr. Trump of making “spurious claims about coronavirus.”
“I hesitate to even print the United States president's words here,” he wrote, “because they're so at odds with what health experts are saying.”
However, a study published on March 30 in the prestigious British medical journal “The Lancet Infectious Diseases” has now put the worldwide death rate at 0.66 percent.
Think Mr. Stelter will offer Mr. Trump an apology?
Now to the ugly. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio threatened to close churches and synagogues that defied a lockdown. He added, Soviet style, that it could be done “permanently.”
When Samaritan’s Purse set up a 68-bed respiratory operation in Central Park as an overflow for Mt. Sinai hospital, de Blasio said he found the group’s orthodox Christian beliefs “troubling” and threatened to monitor them for “discrimination.”
Headed by Franklin Graham, Samaritan’s Purse supports biblical sexuality, including man-woman marriage. Like the Salvation Army, Samaritan’s Purse serves all needy, regardless of sexual identification.
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown’s Department of Education closed all schools – including on-line charter schools hated by leftwing teachers unions. This gives new life to theories about computer viruses.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, without any constitutional authority, shut down the state. Even the beaches are off limits. Violators face a possible maximum jail term of one year and a $2,500 fine.
Rather than leave you with bummers, let’s go back to the best. A miraculous event occurred on, all of places, MSNBC Live. Craig Melvin asked Pastor T.D. Jakes to offer a prayer, and bowed his head. The preacher ended with this:
“We look to you, Lord, to be the source, the strength, the help, the light that we need, strengthen our first responders, strengthen even our broadcast people, strengthen all of us whose lives have been devastated and disrupted and give us the peace that passes all understanding. In Christ’s name we pray, amen.”
Let’s hope Mr. Melvin still has a job.
Robert Knight is a Townhall contributor. His website is roberthknight.com.