GOP convention ignores over 177,000 Americans who've died from coronavirus

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It drew a stark contrast with the Democratic convention, which took time to remember and memorialize the dead.

The first night of the Republican National Convention all but ignored the more than 177,000 victims of raging coronavirus, and instead highlighted dangerous "treatments" for the virus that doctors say are dangerous, as well as featured testimonials from a dentist who is anything but an infectious disease expert.

The lack of empathy to the hundreds of thousands of Americans who lost loved ones to the coronavirus was in stark contrast to the Democrats, who ran a video memorializing the dead and gave speaking slots to family members of those whose loved ones died on the first night of their convention.

The Republican convention appeared to want to ignore the death toll from the pandemic, at the same time that polls show Americans' dissatisfaction with Donald Trump's handling of the virus is a major reason why he is currently an underdog in his reelection bid.

Voters overwhelmingly disapprove of Trump's handling of the virus, during which he's ignored experts and pushed debunked treatments that have been found to not only be ineffective but actually harmful.

When the Republican convention did mention the virus, it tried to whitewash Trump's response, which has been panned by public health experts — who say Trump ignored the pandemic in its early stage.

Experts said Trump could have gathered enough resources for proper testing and tracing in that beginning phase of the pandemic to stop the virus before it could spread uncontrollably across the country. Trump's downplaying of the virus and repeated claims that it would "miraculously" disappear led him to squander more than two months at the start of the pandemic, which experts said led to more deaths.

And Republicans did have a doctor speak.

However, the doctor, G.E. Ghali, was not an infectious disease expert who specializes in treating those with viral respiratory illnesses like COVID-19. He was an oral surgeon who specializes in craniofacial surgery.

The doctor, G.E. Ghali, claimed Trump had a "rapid and efficient response to the coronavirus pandemic" — a blatant lie, as experts have said Trump's decision to stop travel from China was inefficient and still let in thousands of people from the country into the United States.

MSNBC's Rachel Maddow even cut into the broadcast to warn viewers that the treatments the Republican convention highlighted are dangerous and not approved by actual medical experts who treat coronavirus patients.

With three more nights of the GOP convention, it's possible there could be time given to remembering the lives lost to the coronavirus.

But after Night 1, the difference between how the Democrats and Republicans treated the virus is stark.

"The DNC, at times, was like a funeral for the 170,000+ coronavirus victims. The RNC barely seems to have acknowledged that anyone has died at all," Noah Shactman, editor in chief of the Daily Beast, tweeted.

Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.