Remember the Hong Kong flu?
An I'm-so-cute-and-clever reporter recently asked the president if he deserves to be re-elected, given the number of deaths from the coronavirus, noting that the number is greater than American fatalities from the Vietnam war.
People can always find something as a point of comparison as if that automatically added weight to what they are implying. No doubt this reporter thought stats from the Vietnam war added gravitas to her query.
In any case, her disrespectful and rude question didn't deserve to be dignified with an answer. But Trump answered her anyway. Unfortunately, he didn't use the opportunity to his advantage by giving her a little history lesson, as discussed at The Daily Wire:
She may have been unaware that at the height of the Vietnam war, there was something that killed more Americans than the war did, and it was a similar virus — and no one questioned whether a president should be elected or not because of the virus, known as the Hong Kong Flu.
In 1968–69, the Hong Kong flu ravaged the world; it wound up killing more than one million people worldwide, over 100,000 of them in the United States. No lockdowns were imposed and people still went to work, albeit lessening bus travel and implementing social distancing and more washing of their hands.
The Wall Street Journal explained. "The novel virus triggered a state of emergency in New York City; caused so many deaths in Berlin that corpses were stored in subway tunnels; overwhelmed London's hospitals; and in some areas of France left half of the workforce bedridden."
As John Fund notes in National Review, the Hong Kong Flu "was an especially infectious virus that had the ability to mutate and render existing vaccines ineffective[.] ... Hundreds of thousands were hospitalized in the U.S. as the disease hit all 50 states by Christmas 1968. Like COVID-19, it was fatal primarily to people older than 65 with preexisting conditions."
The Encyclopedia Britannica pointed out the highly contagious nature of the disease: "Indeed, within two weeks of its emergence in July in Hong Kong, some 500,000 cases of illness had been reported[.] ... The 1968 flu pandemic caused illness of varying degrees of severity in different populations. For example, whereas illness was diffuse and affected only small numbers of people in Japan, it was widespread and deadly in the United States."
The Hong Kong flu still exists today. The Centers for Disease Control note, "It was first noted in the United States in September 1968[.] ... The H3N2 virus continues to circulate worldwide as a seasonal influenza A virus."
Fund notes that a retired professor of medicine, Philip Snashall, noted in the British Medical Journal that his two-year-old daughter was the first known case of the Hong Kong flu in Europe. He wrote, "How things change. The stock market did not plummet, we were not besieged by the press, men in breathing apparatus did not invade my daughter's play group."
But now hysteria rules the day, and the left is gunning for collapse on all fronts.
Who can forget when Bill Maher wished the economy would crash and trigger a recession so Trump would lose in 2020?
So here we are with the economy in freefall as a highly contagious new virus is circulating that's killing quite a lot of people.
Times have changed since 1968. Big tech overlords are wielding incredible power, the hostile media are pure propaganda, the left will stop at nothing as it adheres to the edict by "any means necessary." These past couple of months, leftists have proven that they're rather fond of totalitarian rule.
We're in a red-hot mess. In 2020, it will all be on the line.