Marc Thiessen is wrong to blame the coronavirus pandemic on China’s totalitarianism (March 30). He might as well blame the Wright brothers — they invented the airplane that has spread the virus worldwide.

China alerted the World Health Organization about the virus on Dec. 31 — one day after a Wuhan doctor reported it there. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention records show the first U.S. case two weeks later, on Jan. 14.  Eight days later, China locked down Wuhan because of COVID-19’s severity. President Trump restricted travel from China on Feb. 2. The U.S. had 26,000-plus cases on March 22; each day brings thousands more.

America is a democracy and the world’s most powerful country. Yet 10 weeks after COVID-19 appeared here, we see skyrocketing case numbers, dire shortages of testing and medical supplies, and panic. There still is no vaccine against coronavirus.

We have witnessed governmental malfeasance, led by a president who thinks he knows it all. On Feb. 24, Trump tweeted, “The coronavirus is very much under control in the USA.”  His dangerously uninformed stance means he squandered several weeks of possible preparation time, along with any credibility he had with Americans.

I wish Trump could stop tweeting and let his scientific and governmental experts lead, but such restraint is almost always beyond his capabilities. Nor is Trump capable of accepting responsibility for anything that goes wrong on his watch, including America’s inadequate response to the virus. He always blames others.

Finally, I urge everyone to follow CDC guidelines and Maine Gov. Janet Mills’ orders.

Anne Williams, Lewiston

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