Dysfunctional politics, a lack of funding for public health and a rush to reopen the economy ignited the resurgence of the virus
Isabelle Papadimitriou, 64, a respiratory therapist in Dallas, had been treating a surge of patients as the Texas economy reopened. She developed covid-19 symptoms June 27 and tested positive two days later. The disease was swift and brutal. She died the morning of the Fourth of July.
Tulip, 40, had seen her country fail to control the novel coronavirus. She had seen Texas ease restrictions even as case counts and hospitalizations soared. She had seen fellow citizens refuse to wear masks or engage in social distancing.
“I feel like her death was a hundred percent preventable. I’m angry at the Trump administration. I’m angry with the state of our politics. I’m angry at the people who even now refuse to wear masks,” she said.
Six months after the coronavirus appeared in America, the nation has failed spectacularly to contain it. The country’s ineffective response has shocked observers around the planet.
Many countries have rigorously driven infection rates nearly to zero. In the United States, coronavirus transmission is out of control. The national response is fragmented, shot through with political rancor and culture-war divisiveness. Testing shortcomings that revealed themselves in March have become acute in July, with week-long waits for results leaving the country blind to real-time virus spread and rendering contact tracing nearly irrelevant.