Wineke: Trump now threatens our kids

Donald Trump

I don’t know if we will ever get to the point with President Donald Trump when people rise up and say “Enough is enough!”

But when he threatens the health of our kids, one might think we’re getting close.

In May, the Centers for Disease Control, which is considered the best health care agency in the world, issued guidelines to schools about how they might reopen safely in the fall.

Those guidelines included keeping windows open, social distancing and eliminating cafeteria meals — lots of irritating things that no one wants to do but which are based on the world as it is, not as we would like it to be.

On Wednesday morning the president announced that he doesn’t approve of those guidelines because they are too tough and too expensive to implement. Wednesday afternoon, the CDC announced it would release new and presumably softer guidelines next week.

So that’s how we make decisions including the health of our children, our teachers and one another. We just ignore those whose careers are built on protecting the health of the nation’s citizens and replace their judgment with that of a guy who has never spent so much as an hour in a public school classroom.

In the meantime, 3 million Americans have now been diagnosed with the coronavirus. Hospital intensive care units throughout much of the country are running out of beds and, more importantly, out of personnel to staff them.

What’s really mind boggling to me is that some hospitals are once again warning of a shortage of personal protection equipment, like gowns and masks.

I mean, honest to God on an oak log, how can we still be running low on this stuff?

Just to make matters worse, we are increasingly alone in our misery. When the pandemic started, we had lots of company. China was shutting down entire cities. Italy was stacking up corpses like cord wood. The British Prime minister was hospitalized with Covid-19.

But they’ve all pretty much recovered. You can see the graphs on the newscasts. Europe spiked, then the number of cases decreased rapidly and leveled off.

The U.S. began with the president telling us everything was under control, moved on to a catastrophe in New York, with much of society shut down for several weeks, then on to the president declaring victory and insisting that society reopen as quickly as possible.

In Wisconsin, we were moving toward a structured reopening that looked completely doable – then the Republican legislature and the Wisconsin Supreme Court threw everything out the window.

Now, we don’t know what’s going to happen. If the president has his way, the schools will open at the end of summer leaving teachers and administrators to figure out how to make things as safe as possible. They’ll likely be blamed when everyone gets sick.

This should not be happening.