Editor’s note: This article is contributed by Mrs. Facts, a Dane who has followed US politics for years. You can follow her on her Facebook page here.
Danish journalist and author, David Trads, wrote an article on April 6 about the glaringly different ways Denmark and the United States have chosen to address the corona crisis, and it doesn’t look good for Donald Trump.
I’ve been following United States politics since the 2012 election, and I have often said that the things happening in the US wouldn’t fly here in Denmark, and Mr. Trads so eloquently pointed out what I’ve been saying all along. So, I translated his article to English and secured his permission to post it here on the Gamut and on my Facebook page, Mrs. Facts.
Thank Goodness We Aren’t Governed By Trump
Undoubtedly there are a lot – quite a lot – watching Mette Frederiksen’s [Danish prime minister] press briefings in these corona times, but imagine, if you will, the prime minister beginning her next presser this way:
“People love my press briefings: There are just as many people wanting to see me as there are people wanting to see a national soccer match. Or the X-Factor final.”
Because most world leaders are men, we've mainly been hearing men's voices on the state of the world and #COVID-19. But there are a dozen female world leaders like #MetteFrederiksen of #Denmark. Denmark was one of the first countries to take action against the outbreak. pic.twitter.com/CGKLweqSeR
— The Female Quotient (@femalequotient) April 2, 2020
Or, what if Frederiksen in the middle of a presser was told that Lars Løkke Rasmussen [former prime minister] had caught the corona-virus, and then with a silly smile said this about her former opponent:
“Løkke’s in isolation? Gee, that’s too bad.”
Or think about if the prime minister – in a fictional world – was asked why she wouldn’t help Region South Denmark, but only the Social Democratic governed regions because Stephanie Lose, who is a member of the Liberal Left [right wing opposition party], hadn’t praised her enough:
Or imagine that Frederiksen during a presser was asked if she herself would take responsibility for things that haven’t been handled well enough during the crisis, coldly responded:
“I don’t take responsibility at all.”
Or, consider for a moment how the Danish people would react if the prime minister was asked which grade – on a scale from 1-10 – she would give herself for her leadership:
“I give myself a 10!”
Or think, just think, if Frederiksen made Kåre Quist [TV host] broadcast a questionnaire during 21Sunday with these 3 reply options on the prime minister’s handling of the corona crisis:
“1) Superb, 2) Great, 3) Very good.”
Reality In The USA
All six scenarios above are fictional, but – translated to American – they are the stark reality in the United States. Pronounced by the grand-bragging, bizarre President Donald Trump or a sycophant medium in the past days.
Trump is constantly bragging about his ratings; mocking politicians who are sick with corona; refusing to help governors who aren’t praising him; refusing to take any responsibility; giving himself the top grade.
It is so unbelievable that you’d think it’s a lie…but the thing that seems grotesque and unbelievable when you put it in a Danish context (as above) is normality and reality every single day in the reality show we call “Donald Trump”!
I say: “Thank goodness we aren’t governed by Trump!”
Because one thing is that the president is self-bragging…you could perhaps live with that if only he delivered the corona-crisis control that is timely. As an example, here’s what Trump thought of corona just a month ago (2/27) [Danish time]:
“And again, when you have 15 people, and the 15 within a couple of days is going to be down to close to zero, that’s a pretty good job we’ve done.”
She Unites, He Divides
Well, today more than 350,000 have been infected…
Or, what about this quote from Trump three weeks ago (3/9):
“So last year 37,000 Americans died from the common flu…Nothing is shut down, life & the economy go on. At this moment there are 546 confirmed cases of CoronaVirus, with 22 deaths. Think about that!”
Yes, let’s think about that. Today there are more than 10,000 deaths in the USA – and the authorities expect that between 100,000 and 200,000 will die before the crisis is over.
And, well, it was precisely at the time in March when Trump said that corona didn’t matter, that Denmark began the shut-down – with a majority vote from all the parties in Parliament.
The incompetence and the smugness that Trump is showing is so wild that it’s almost unbearable. His constant claims that there will soon be a miracle cure and a vaccine made Dr. Fauci, the US equivalent of Søren Brostrøm, exclaim:
“I can’t jump in front of the microphone and push him down.”
It’s a tragedy to follow Trump’s America – and most Americans think so, too. The support for him seems, however, to be slowly rising – close to 48 percent – but that is very low for a president when the USA is hit by an outside enemy. As an example, George W. Bush reached 90 percent approval after 9/11.
Mette Frederiksen who – to put it mildly – has chosen a different way to communicate and govern has massive support. According to Gallup, 96(!) percent support her right now.
She unites. He divides.
Featured image: Screen capture