Dear Diary: Trump's coronavirus plan is...xenophobic. Signed, Jim Acosta

President Trump unveiled a powerful strategy to defend America from the coronavirus in last night's speech, with a realistic plan of action that's certain to save lives.

It was spare and credible, buttressed by the foresight he showed in protecting the country early with a travel shutdown from China.

But then there was...CNN's Jim Acosta, the self-regarding, pious, self-pitying, pompous chief White House correspondent, complaining that the whole thing was...xenophobic.

According to the Washington Examiner, he actually said this:

"[A]t one point during the address," said Acosta, "the president referred to the coronavirus as a 'foreign virus.' ... Now why the president would go as far as to describe it as a 'foreign virus,' that is something we'll also be asking questions about."

He added, "But it should be pointed out that Stephen Miller, who is an immigration hardliner, who advises the president, is one of the top domestic policy advisers and speechwriters, was a driving force in writing this speech. And I think it is going to come across to a lot of Americans as smacking of xenophobia to use that kind of term in this speech."

Just put "Dear Diary" in front of that blather, and it all comes into focus. 

Rather than grasp the authentic picture of a terrible disease from abroad, Acosta prioritizes taking umbrage at the fact — that's right, fact — that the disease is coming from another country.

"That is something we'll also be asking questions about," he sniffs. 

Oh, really?

Does he mean to say he "questions" whether it really is coming from China, supposing that it might be a domestic virus instead?  That China isn't culpable here, and every nation's guilty?  He doesn't seem to read the news, or worse still, he doesn't seem to think we read the news. 

Or like China itself, is he so angry at Trump for personal reasons that he's willing to mouth the Chicom propaganda line?  Oh, hey, don't look to China for the origins of this global disaster — it's not coming from anywhere, actually, so everybody let's pretend?

Is it a matter of him not wanting the matter brought up at all, the better to spare the Chinese government any scrutiny for its mismanagement of affairs over there, something that has enabled the virus to spread like wildfire, hitting nations across the world, some worse than others?

Like Tom Wolfe's Victorian Gentleman, for Acosta, some things are just too, too delicate to bring up.  Cover the piano legs lest anyone think anything improper. 

The Examiner's Becket Adams points out that dissociating the virus from China is pretty much the Chicom propaganda line, howling as they are at world opprobrium at their record of denial, cover-up of evidence, and jailing of doctors who first sounded the alarm.  That bad behavior is exactly what enabled the virus to spread, putting the whole industrial center of that country in quarantine.

If Acosta doesn't think this thing originated in China, maybe he needs to take a trip to China to see for himself.  Somehow, he's not booking any trips.

This leaves the matter most likely a toxic mix of grievance-identity politics, personal grudges, and Trump hate.  Dear Diary, indeed.

Meanwhile, Trump's swift action to contain the spread of the virus is precisely why the U.S. has been hit by the virus with far less intensely than Europe's nations, which, like Acosta, just didn't want to seem xenophobic by shutting down travel with China.

Italy, a nation of vulnerable old people to start with, reported nearly 200 deaths just yesterday.  Now it's under a nationwide lockdown, and a very bad one, with all commercial and public establishments shut down and just groceries and pharmacies left open.  With more than 12,000 cases and nearly a thousand dead, its casualty rate is second only to China's.  But rest assured: in Acosta's book, Italy's government can't be called xenophobic.

It's something worth considering next time Acosta tells us we all need to be worried about Trump's xenophobia and ignore the serious news in front of us.

Image credit: TVO / YouTube screen shot.

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