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Opinion

Letters to the Editor: Trump recklessly turns the coronavirus outbreak into a political football

Some commuters at Los Angeles Union Station wear breathing masks Jan. 31 amid concerns about a coronavirus pandemic.
Some commuters at Los Angeles Union Station wear breathing masks Jan. 31 amid concerns about a coronavirus pandemic.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: Can you take a warning about a virus pandemic and turn it into a personal insult? Yes, if you are President Trump. (“Trump to hold news conference on coronavirus threat, claims media are ‘panicking markets,’” Feb. 26)

Can you tell more than 300 million people to not worry about a disease when the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization tell us to get ready for trouble? You can if you are Trump.

When sincere science-based health warnings from neutral agencies are treated like hostile political maneuvers, it is the height of paranoid incompetence.

If the president hinders efforts to prepare for the spread of the coronavirus, who will he blame for that colossal failure of intelligence and judgment?

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Michael Gross, M.D., Woodland Hills

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To the editor: Trump’s uninformed yet unsurprising trivialization of the serious impact of the coronavirus demonstrates not only his ignorance concerning a grave threat to public health, but also his customary politicization of events of even the utmost national urgency.

The president’s tepid response to what some healthcare officials are already labeling a pandemic most likely can be traced to his need to placate financial markets. Many analysts have attributed their weak performance of late to the coronavirus’ economic impact, and Trump fears this will lower his approval ratings and his chance of reelection.

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A responsible president would be calling for increased government action and funding and issue honest panic-free public statements. Trump is doing us no favors by displaying optimism about a serious threat to public health while ultimately serving his own political agenda.

Roger Hirschberg, Bondville, Vt.

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To the editor: Trump finally has to handle a crisis that he hasn’t instigated. Let us see how he handles a real crisis.

David Israelsky, Huntington Beach


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