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Cartoon ushers in a new low

I was appalled at the despicable and ugly editorial cartoon in the Parkersburg News and Sentinel April 21 edition.

For those who missed it, it depicted President Trump speaking to an obvious older vet saying “I want to reopen the country right away even though it might kill off the greatest generation.” The vet response is “thank you for your selfishness.”

Why would this paper print such a divisive and false editorial?

The administration has put forth a data approached method to slowly reopen this country, supported by, and no doubt authored by the medical experts on the president’s coronavirus team. It is a system that uses three progressive gateways (phases) that each state/locality must meet based on statistical data. Each of these three gateways will allow additional economy openings and eventually allow the country to be at nearly full force. This means there will be different levels of openings at different times around the country, depending on meeting the gateway criteria. The states control when and how to open their economy and not the president. If you wish this information, it is available on whitehouse.gov/openingamerica, in that I don’t remember seeing this in local print.

With that said, my question to this newspaper and supporters of keeping the economy shut down is this. At what point are you in favor of letting businesses slowly reopen? Do you want the coronavirus to be completely eliminated? Do you want to wait until there are no more deaths? Or maybe no more hospitalizations? Do you wish to wait for a vaccine (maybe 18 months, if ever)? How many more people losing jobs is acceptable? I have heard many criticisms for opening our country too soon, but I have not heard the critics say what they would do and at what point.

For those who have taken the time to listen to the daily briefings from the White House, it is everyone’s concern to open as safely as possible, without completely destroying the economy; which could lead the U.S. and the rest of the world into a deep and prolonged depression. In the last five weeks, there have been over 26 million jobs lost, countless businesses shut down, and some reports have stated that up to 20 percent of small businesses may not reopen at all.

It is a travesty that China unleashed this deadly disease upon the world. Each life lost is a real tragedy to friends and family. However, four in ten working Americans have lost their job or experienced a pay cut. A severe depression could even be more disastrous, with millions of people permanently unemployed, mental depression, suicides, drug addiction, etc., and countless businesses gone.

There is a balance, without the garbage as depicted in the editorial cartoon.

Larry Reed

Parkersburg

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