If you’re reading this, please take a brief reflection at the miracle of surviving what has turned out to be a tumultuously threatening year, that still has lots of unpleasant surprises to unleash before it makes its dramatic exit.
When the weightiness of Covid-19 became our collective grief and disbelief with the undeniable forces of doom and gloom from the immediate shutdown and rising death toll, the shocking turn of events also delayed any plans scheduled for the brand new decade.
To say that 2020 has been the rollercoaster of emotions that were already too fragile for such a force of nature would be an understatement.
From a personal standpoint, it was difficult to reconcile with the notion that my ambitious itinerary of making the long-awaited return to outside engagement after about a two-and-half year hiatus, would have to wait in recognition of a global pandemic.
And as we survey the wreckage of the botched job the Trump administration wrought in defiance of taking the coronavirus seriously from the start, when more lives could’ve been spared from the gross incompetency of an egomaniacal monster, it’s very clear that it will take a mighty long time to accurately log in the atrocities of the worst presidency ever to befall this country.
Before the full scale of the deadly virus was realized, Trump and his henchmen were mostly invested in touting the best economy on record, and aggressively rejecting the narratives that would threaten their winning streak.
Trump’s obsessiveness with his reelection is responsible for his nonchalance when it came to implementing the lifesaving measures that the CDC recommended once there were confirmed cases of coronavirus.
Instead of supporting the guidelines formulated by Dr. Anthony Fauci and the pool of public health experts, Trump and his co-conspirators were too busy downplaying a rapidly growing health crisis that was dubbed a “political hoax” by the nefarious GOP and their supreme leader.
Almost seven months later, the sobering data that confirms almost 190,000 deaths and the total number of cases totaling a whopping 6.26 million is the brutal evidence of how Donald Trump and his cast of enablers treacherously curated the tragic series of events, that will surely be the death of us if another four years is added to this shit show.
This weary nation is not robust enough to weather the second term of a self-professed white nationalist, who is inciting this race war with public applause of the militarized law enforcement, while claiming that white people are killed by police in higher numbers compared to the communities that have been enduring legalized domestic terrorism for centuries.
White House communications has been compromised by the unfiltered jargon of misinformation and outright lies, that perpetuate extended periods of unrest and the systemic violence that rages on, as frustrated citizens with too much to lose are rightfully rebelling against the injustices that high-powered bigots are endorsing in the name of mandated oppression.
There’s also the neglected population of jobless Americans who were either already out-of-work or overworked and underpaid before Covid-19 hit, and after a season of uncertainty and the nagging apprehension of what none of us can feasibly control, there’s no indication that the never-ending search for jobs that compensate accordingly, will eventually yield fruitful results.
Forecasters have reported that 1.8 million jobs were added to the economy in July, which was much less than the almost 5 million that were added in June. And the country’s unemployment rate remains at over 10% with about 13 million jobs lost since Covid-19 became a reality in February.
But Trump is preoccupied with the favorable data about jobs being added as he excitedly tweets — “GREAT JOBS NUMBERS” while neglecting the bothersome metrics that prove how hiring the unemployed as slowed down considerably.
There’s also the buzzkill about how the unemployment rate affects Americans differently, with whites at a little over 9%, while Black workers are grappling with 15% and Latinx and Asian workers are assigned 13% and 12% respectively.
The dire state of the job market is greatly affected by the unsteadiness of the economy, which is a direct result from the ravages of the global pandemic, made even worse by the lackluster response by the Trump administration.
The first stimulus package that was approved for distribution by Congress to soften the blow for newly jobless tax-payers and crippled entrepreneurs, and also provide the temporary buffer for an economy on the verge of an epic collapse that could rival previous emergencies, barely sufficed based on testimonies verifying insurmountable hardships.
It’s worth noting that wealthy individuals and organizations were also gifted millions from the Covid-19 relief fund which is a testament to how the federal government operates when ensuring that the rich will get richer, while the needy will be grossly neglected and used as political pawns in the tug-of-war that unites both parties.
It’s been months since the extra $600 a week of unemployment aid officially ran its course, and in that time, high-ranking Democrats and Republicans have failed to reach an agreement for the second stimulus package, that should’ve been signed off long before desperate Americans had to adjust to the reactivated financial burden that they didn’t ask for.
The viral conversation about Nancy Pelosi’s not so secret salon visit to freshen up her highlights in the midst of a national crisis, and minus the mask she loudly proclaims as necessary, is the current state-of-affairs in a country where millions are struggling to achieve the bare minimum of maintaining housing and three meals a day, thanks to hiked prices of grocery store items.
But as prominent members of two embattled parties argue over whether or not the modest $600 addition to unemployment is hampering the motives of out-of-work Americans to energetically find jobs, the remaining months of what would surely be a volatile election year, doesn’t bode well for those who might not be able to indulge in the fast approaching holiday festivities.
There’s no doubt that the jobless have become the scum of a nation that’s on the brink of self-destruction.
Even before coronavirus made its fateful arrival, the exercise of hunting for a job was a headache-inducing endeavor that might have served as the warning sign of just how bad things would get if an unpredicted glitch in the system occurred.
Job websites filled with stagnant postings or refreshed non-existent roles, and once reliable structures like temp agencies that are now powerless against the hostility of pompous employers, that are in no rush to facilitate the process in a timely manner, are all just the tip of a chilly iceberg that has given vulnerable candidates frost bite.
I’ve diligently documented my torturous journey of looking for the job that I will never find, and even included the bits about how the trendy “gig economy” has become the preferred default for big-name companies who would rather save the extra money for eye-popping bonuses awarded to bloated CEOs.
Employers don’t want to be saddled with funding health insurance, 401Ks, and the complete package that new hires who would ordinarily inherit as they adapt to being a vital part of their team with the option for a promising trajectory.
The last time I was assigned a cubicle with my name on it was back when interviews actually resulted in job offers within two weeks of contact and correspondence.
Jobseekers are now viewed through disapproving lenses for not being savvy enough to avoid the embarrassment of looking for work at a time when such a thing is anything but convenient.
This explains why even the federal government is reluctant to bail us out, while a deadly virus hovers with a menacing message for the future.
The “booming economy” will no longer thrive if the population of jobless Americans are abandoned to sink or swim.
This thuggish administration coupled with the unforgivable callousness of privileged politicians, who boast impressive net worths, have all conspired to minimize the acute urgency of the long-overdue second stimulus package.
Perhaps, the “influencer culture” that dictates the sought after over-night success strategy, has bastardized the honor of an honest day’s work, and why there’s no shame in failing to blissfully reside in the world of brand sponsorships and OnlyFans domains.
Some people are used to the steady income from the 9 to 5 formula, and until that becomes available, it’s the responsibility of the federal government to do all it can, and then some to ensure that the unemployed are cared for, while Covid-19 slowly refrains from being an active threat.
There’s no doubt that history will not be kind to this era.
And for those who will live to tell the story, the themes will most likely highlight the damning ways in which “America the beautiful,” wielded its ugliness at the expense of those who couldn’t afford the price of immunity.
That’s the redefinition of what Labor Day will represent to the outcasts of a criminalized society from henceforth.