LONDON, Feb. 26 (Xinhua) -- As the U.S. COVID-19 deaths reached the grim milestone of 500,000 Monday, the disproportionate number of deaths exposes "a basic failure of national security," a report by The Guardian has said.
The U.S. government was unable to protect its citizens against a deadly pathogen, said an opinion published on the British newspaper Tuesday, noting that in midst of global pandemic, 87 million Americans are uninsured or underinsured.
According to a recent study published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, life expectancy in the United States plummeted by an entire year in the first half of 2020 amid the coronavirus pandemic.
In the article, the author William Barber II, an American protestant minister and political activist, said that for African Americans, the impact was nearly three times as severe. "We have not simply suffered a disaster. This disaster has unveiled dysfunction in our society," he noted.
For a long time in American public life, people have accepted the "simplistic framing of any attempt to establish justice or deal with systemic inequality as 'far-left' or 'progressive'," he added.
The half a million COVID-19 deaths demand "a grown-up conversation about the policies" that shape people's public life, the author wrote. "It is insulting to a people who have lost half a million parents, grandparents, siblings and partners to continue talking about the root causes of a national crisis in simplistic terms that do not fit the reality we can all see," he noted.
According to the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University, the death toll across the United States rose to 508,307 as of Friday morning, with the national case count topping 28.4 million.
The United States remains the worst hit country by the pandemic, with the world's highest caseload and death toll, accounting for roughly 25 percent of the global cases and over 20 percent of the global deaths. Enditem