Sunday, April 14, 2024

After four years, over 1.2 million people have lost their lives, and an enormous amount of money has been spent. Now, it’s time for a rematch.After four years, over 1.2 million people have lost their lives, and an enormous amount of money has been spent. Now, it’s time for a rematch

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Many Americans might feel like they’re going back in time to 2020, with another big election showdown coming up in 2024. But even though the same politicians are in the spotlight, life has shifted quite a bit.

In March 13, 2020, the then-President Donald Trump said there was a national emergency because of Covid-19.

Back then, nobody knew just how much life was going to change. Looking back at news coverage from that time feels like stepping into a time machine. We were clueless about what was about to happen.

But now, four years later, it’s striking how Covid-19 has transformed American life and also slipped into the background.

Things like lockdowns, masks, and debates about sending kids to school were on people’s minds every day and influenced how they voted in 2020. The measures states took to make it easier for people to vote during the pandemic are now at the center of some conspiracy theories, which Trump still holds onto.

The Covid-19 numbers are still shocking. Nearly 1.2 million Americans have died from it over the past four years, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. While the worst outbreaks seem to be over, hundreds of people are still dying from Covid-19 every week.

The government has spent about $4.4 trillion dealing with Covid-19, which has made the national debt skyrocket. And that’s not counting the trillions spent by the Federal Reserve to stabilize the economy during the pandemic.

The economy is still adjusting. Inflation went up when people started going out again after lockdowns, and while wages have gone up, many Americans still struggle to make ends meet. Buying a home feels out of reach for a lot of people because of high interest rates, and there’s uncertainty about the future of office buildings and commercial real estate.

President Joe Biden recently reminded people during his State of the Union address that the pandemic started when Trump was president. He said we should remember the fear, the job losses, and the spike in crime. He also mentioned that the pandemic doesn’t control our lives anymore, thanks to vaccines.

Trump, on the other hand, claimed credit for the vaccines during Biden’s speech. He’s promised to take money away from schools that require vaccines for students, though his stance has caused some pushback even from his supporters.

There’s a new player in presidential politics, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who’s running as an independent candidate and shares Trump’s doubts about vaccines. He’s gaining some attention and support.

Fewer Americans are getting vaccinated against Covid-19. A survey shows that less than a quarter of adults have gotten the most recent recommended dose, and only about a quarter are up to date on the latest Covid-19 vaccine.

Long Covid is still affecting millions of Americans. Some studies suggest that a significant number of people are dealing with symptoms long after getting infected.

Kids who lived through the Covid era have been affected too. Test scores dropped during remote learning, and while there’s been some improvement, it’s clear that the pandemic has widened inequalities, especially in education.

There are still many unanswered questions about where the virus came from. There’s evidence pointing to a lab leak in China, but the lack of transparency from the Chinese government has made it hard to know for sure.

The director general of the World Health Organization says the world isn’t ready for another pandemic because there are still many problems from the last one that haven’t been solved. He’s calling for more cooperation and information sharing between countries to prevent future outbreaks.

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