The Good: The Fundraisers

As craptacular as this week has been, it brought out the best in some of us. Governor Cooper, for example, reminded us of his human strength and decency: His decision to shut down schools and large gatherings—including church services—was probably inevitable, but it was still politically courageous; his subsequent move to close restaurants and bars was even more so. There were also the bars and restaurants that shut down before they had to, because it was the right thing to do. But the best thing we’ve seen is this: Across the Triangle, communities have quickly mobilized aid, with numerous fundraisers specific to vulnerable industries. Baxter Bar + Arcade owner Nick Stroud started a GoFundMe for service workers without work. Carrboro Mutual Aid is fundraising with an eye toward affected immigrant populations. Durham Artist Relief Fund and the NC Artist Relief Fund are raising money for independent artists. Organizations like Porch, TABLE, and the Food Bank of Eastern and Central North Carolina, meanwhile, are collecting food for those who need it. Give them a hand, everyone. 

The Bad: Every One of You Idiots Pretending Coronavirus Is No Big Deal

You know who you are: Those of you who packed into bars and nightclubs and parties last weekend, who scoffed at the notion of social distancing, who told yourself that you’re young and healthy and this thing is basically a cold and you have nothing to worry about. So look, dummies. The thing about viruses is you can carry them even if they don’t hurt you. You can pass them to your mom or your grandma or someone else in the next place you go, and they can pass them to their mom or grandma, and that’s how things spread, and that’s how people die. Hope your good times were worth it.

The Awful: Stephen Miller

Duke’s best-known white-nationalist alum, who somehow is still a senior White House adviser, had a key role in crafting President Trump’s disastrous Oval Office address last Wednesday, along with Senior Son-in-Law Jared Kushner. Naturally, the hastily crafted, drably delivered speech took on Miller’s degenerate personality; Trump’s referred to the coronavirus as a “foreign virus,” and blamed Europeans and the Chinese for bringing it to the U.S., while praising himself, minimizing damage, and—astoundingly, in a scripted Oval Office speech—saying things that the White House immediately had to retract because they weren’t true. “This is not a financial crisis,” Trump said, using Miller’s words. The next day was the stock market’s worst since 1987’s Black Monday. 

Contact editor in chief Jeffrey C. Billman at 

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