Me first! America first! Two sides of the same coin.
The global pandemic has brought the ‘me first’ culture into sharp focus. We are now confronted with people who refuse to wear masks and to take other precautions to prevent the spread of the virus. (The main purpose of a mask is to prevent one from infecting someone else.) Their creed is straight forward. “It is my right not to wear a mask in public. If I do infect others, that is their problem not mine. My rights trump all others.”
On the international front, ‘me first’ plays out in much the same way. The Trump administration is standing in the way of global efforts to aid those counties which could be devastated by the pandemic. For example, we will never know how many thousands of lives Trump’s abrupt decision to withhold funding from the World Health Organization will cost. For him, as long as they are not American lives, what does it matter?
In Trump’s America, ‘me first’ has become the coin of the realm. We used to be better than that.
John Rogan, Tillamook, OR