The tension between President Biden and Gov. DeSantis is a glaring example that the problem the President faces with the pandemic is a political one. He’s dealing with large pockets of public health denialism that are deploying this issue—packaged in the rhetoric of individual freedom—to undercut efforts to protect the population, the economy, and our health care system from the ravages of this ongoing pandemic.
America is today a divided nation, one faction vaccinated and sometimes masked, the other against vaccines and always unmasked that makes containing the virus and its variants nearly impossible. And the costs of the continued damage are paid by everyone, through funding health care, to the damage to our economy, to the psychological carnage of entering another school year with this virus.
But Biden doesn’t have much time. He will need to continue to press his foot on the gas to reverse the direction that the nation has taken in the past few months, largely as a result of the anti-vaccination movement. While more incentives and efforts at persuasion are necessary, he will also have to continue to govern with a strong hand to make sure that many more Americans finally agree to take the vaccine which the Trump administration proudly spent so much money to produce.