To the editor,

Anyone familiar with intubation knows Sandra Andringa-Meuer’s survival of two weeks on a ventilator was an incredible emergence from a journey through hell. Never having been on a ventilator personally, I can’t imagine her feelings, but I can her loved ones and I know that if there is blame to lay for that, they want to lay it hard. I know how it feels to have a very dear one come off a ventilator, their life saved, only to see it wasted by subsequent bad medical decision-making. So, I can understand her outrage over the avoidable mistakes made by those who’ve assumed the power to determine life and death, and I am personally outraged when I see them continue on in their folly because the power they’ve amassed permits it.  

That said, I believe that she and the many she’s joined with to bring a lawsuit against the People’s Republic of China, are barking up the wrong tree.

Xi Jinping will not be held accountable for delaying divulging what he probably knew about the transmissibility of the virus, unless it’s politically advantageous to our government. Remember, we’re a country that tolerates the murder and dismemberment of its own citizens before jeopardizing a potentially good deal. Besides, there is no proof that full and immediate disclosure would have prevented Sandra’s infection.   

We know, however, that Trump was informed of the serious threat the virus posed over two months before Sandra was infected. Over two months! That China could have prevented its spread, after the nature of COVID-19 had been confirmed by Chinese doctors, is a dubious, weak case. On the other hand, the case against Trump and his political allies, for dismissing a highly credible warning is rock solid, and they’re still promoting politically motivated, bad medical decisions that risk the lives of more Sandras.

So, after making it through hell, Sandra can seek justice in China, in vain. Or she can turn around and go right back there, which is what Trump is telling us all to do, when he declares himself above the law. Or, she can keep her powder dry for when she meets citizen Trump on 5th Avenue next year.

Speaking metaphorically, of course.  He can get back to being sued once he leaves office.

John Costello


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