Congrats to the brave astronauts who blasted off from Florida today and that are headed towards the International Space Station in the first American launch in nearly ten years and our very first ever public/private manned flight. It was breathtaking to watch and inspiring to think about the fact that during my lifetime men and women will very likely land on Mars. Talk about a BIG day for science and for all of the good that humanity represents when we work together to accomplish something that’s bigger than any one of us or any one country is by itself. Bravo NASA and SpaceX.
Back here on earth, sadly, we continue to learn that reality is not the same thing as reality television. On television one can gain fame with a silly phrase such as “you’re fired” but causes a deeply divided nation to slip ever deeper into darkness when our supposed leader Tweets “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.” It’s hard to imagine that a supposedly grown man in his 70’s would be so callous towards a suffering nation, much less need Twitter to make clear that such stupid comments only make things worse.
And speaking of making things worse, as wonderful as the launch was, it was terribly disappointing to watch the President and Vice President standing shoulder to shoulder, a mask or social distancing nowhere to be found, despite a deadly public health crisis raging all around us that has seen millions become sick, more than 100,000 American’s die and 40 Million people unemployed. It’s as if these supposed leaders don’t realize, or care, about reality and that what they do and say has an impact on our country and citizens.
How else can you explain a President who is threatening and mocking North Carolina’s Governor over whether or not the Republican Party will host it’s 2020 Convention in that state unless state public health officials allow them to pack 20,000 people into the convention? Who in their right mind would suggest that such a thing is a good idea in the midst of COVID-19 when every state and local agency, school district, and businesses both private and public struggle to implement social distancing policies to protect everyone and keep them a reasonable distance apart? And what’s their solution? Announce America’s departure from the World Health Organization in the midst of a health crisis. Brilliant.
America and the world deserve better than what our elected leaders in Washing are offering. We need new leaders and we need new ideas, a new direction. The George Floyd riots make it clear just how rightfully upset people are over the injustice of his death, but I also suspect that this uprising is at least somewhat related to people’s frustration with the direction of America in so many ways. And do you blame them (us)? By the day, our leaders are increasingly disconnected from reality and the sooner our country rises up in mass to demand better of ourselves, the better.