With President Trump testing positive for COVID-19, it is evident that his attitude toward the pandemic has contributed to his diagnosis. His disregard for social distancing and mask-wearing increased his chances of catching the coronavirus. - Photo courtesy of ctvnews.ca

Over the weekend, I sat contemplating how we got here as a country: almost 210,000 Americans dead, millions more infected and now the president in the hospital because of his arrogance.

I have no sympathy for the man who has overseen a dreadful response to a pandemic that didn’t need to end up this way. I have no sympathy for the man who took a joyride to stroke his ego while other Americans either died alone or never got to say goodbye to their loved ones.

Of course, I wish him well in recovery, but I know his ordeal isn’t going to teach him anything. By the time you’re reading this, he probably will have been discharged earlier than most medical professionals say he should. He and his team will likely continue to ignore norms and lie about what’s going on. In the end, I have sympathy only for my country.

A lot is a stake on Nov. 3, it’s almost too much to list: voting rights, reproductive rights, healthcare, democracy itself. No, I wasn’t a Joe Biden supporter. He wasn’t my choice in the primary, he wasn’t even in my top five, but I believe he has to win; I’ve already received my ballot, and I’ve voted for him. I think Biden can, if he wants to and has the political will, be a transformative president. He can pass a policy agenda akin to the New Deal or the Great Society. I know many are skeptical, but Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson at the time weren’t the progressive policy warriors that we view them as now.

As a member of the Democratic Socialists of America, I know it can be frustrating for those on the left. Progress can seem futile. However, it is not. Our fight is just beginning. Struggles for social justice have been around since the 19th century. Those that fought in the past made progress, and we will make progress. But there have always been roadblocks, and right now, we are facing one of the biggest challenges.

However, during these times of great conflict, we make the most considerable leaps of progress. And to do so, we must come together with those that we have at times felt have been our adversaries. Leftists, liberals, centrists and constitutional-loving conservatives should be coming together because America is at the precipice.

I don’t have sympathy for those that continue to stand with a president or a party that is destroying norms so that they can willfully dodge any democratic consequences. I have sympathy for those living in homelessness, for those who have lost their jobs because of our government’s incompetence, for those who suffered during this pandemic. I have sympathy only for my country and its citizens and its future. And I will use that in the last few weeks before Nov. 3 to try and turn the course, and I hope others who stand for justice and who love their country do so as well.

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