Suppose, for a moment, that there was an agency that was America’s first and last and only defense against plagues and pandemics — whether those coming from nature, or from other human beings. (Remember those Anthrax outbreaks in Russia a while back.) And suppose you were a responsible, intelligent, well-meaning President of these United States. Who would you want in charge of that agency? Well, someone competent and objective and dedicated to their job. Obviously.
Now, what would Donald Trump do?
You got it. Trump has decided that the Center For Disease Control should be headed up by a man who…really and truly, this is not a joke…thinks that AIDS was God’s punishment of homosexuals. Jake Thomas, writing in The Maven, notes that Trump wants to make Robert Redfield head of the CDC. And Redfield just happens to be one of those marvelous folks who believes that HIV was sent to afflict sinners.
Before we get into Redfield himself, let’s take a look at the Westboro-esque idea that God sent AIDS to whack the wicked. If that were the case, and Gay men were being punished for, well, having sex with each other, then you’d have to say that other groups in society who had low rates of AIDS infection would be blessed, right? So, that being the case, given that Lesbians have one of the lowest rates of infection in the world…
See where I’m going with that?
Or, how about this? If Gay men are dying from AIDS as a result of God’s wrath, then you’d have to think that other groups who have disproportionately high rates of infection are equally sinful. Like, say hemophiliacs, because of all those transfusions they have to get.
Therefore, if you follow the logic, then God hates Gay men and hemophiliacs, but He loves Lesbians.
Somehow, I don’t think Redfield is actually going to follow that logic to its conclusion.
But then, again, Redfield is not a reasonable man, is he? He isn’t rational when he makes these kinds of arguments. He is not using data to form well supported conclusions. He is, instead, right up there with the folks who burned “witches” because crops failed or wells went dry. He is being a superstitious ignoramus who somehow managed to miss the Enlightenment.
And this man is going to head up the CDC.
If that thought doesn’t frighten you, then it is because either you a) live in a sane country with a sane medical policy, or b) you are already dead.
I’m hoping it is the former, but, you never know.
Meanwhile, I’ll be reading my copy of Defoe’s Journal of a Plague Year. Might pick up some useful tips.