Socialist Worker

Trump’s drive to end lockdown is behind growing catastrophe in US

by Sophie Squire
Issue No. 2711

Donald Trump wants to send people back to work - and to their deaths

Donald Trump wants to send people back to work - and to their deaths (Pic: White House)


The death toll from Covid-19 surpassed 128,000 in the US on Monday of this week. Yet president Donald Trump is still driving a return to work and the easing of lockdown measures. 

In a speech made to a Students For Trump rally in Arizona on Tuesday of last week Trump claimed the virus was “going away.”

But the easing of lockdown measures has caused cases of the virus to soar in several states.

In Texas, Florida and Arizona, reopening plans have been paused due to a rise in cases.

The state governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, said, “Covid-19 has taken a very swift and very dangerous turn in Texas over just the past few weeks.” It comes after bars and restaurants and other businesses in Texas were allowed to reopen from as early as the beginning of May.

Clare Lemlich is a socialist who lives in Los Angeles and is part of the Marx21 socialist group.

She told Socialist Worker, “The US accounts for only 4 percent of the world’s population, but it’s home to a full quarter of global Covid-19 infections.

“This past week several states reported record‑breaking infection surges and hospitalisations.

“The surge is a direct result of state and local governments prematurely easing stay at home restrictions and re-opening the economy.

“Cases aren’t only rising in states run by Republicans eager to get people back to work no matter the cost.

“In Democrat-run California, cases jumped by 69 percent over just two days.”

Clare also pointed to how racism and inequality have determined who is most vulnerable to the virus.

“The scale of inequality and systemic racism that already existed across the country means Black and Latino people are far more likely to get the virus and die from it,” she said.

“The US’s for-profit medical system means Covid survivors may have to pay huge medical bills for their treatment.”

In a very positive sign, Fiat Chrysler workers at the Sterling Heights Assembly Plant near Detroit, stopped work on Saturday evening. They had learned that a worker had tested positive for coronavirus. At least five workers employed at the plant have died from Covid-19.

This action followed two days of walkouts at the Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Detroit demanding better safety measures.


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