Boot acknowledged in the op-ed published Tuesday — headlined “Welcome to the United States of ’Idiocracy,’” a reference to the 2006 film of the same name — that it’s “easy, and correct, to blame epic failure” of the United States’ response to the coronavirus pandemic “on abysmal leadership.”
The pundit listed President Donald Trump and his administration’s multiple shortcomings in tackling the public health crisis that’s now killed more than 128,000 people nationwide.
However, the commentator also urged readers ― amid a resurgence of the virus following the easing of lockdown restrictions and subsequent failure in some states to implement proper social distancing measures ― to “recall the adage that ‘every nation gets the government it deserves.’”
“Trump and the Trumpy governors did not seize power by force,” Boot reminded. “They were elected by constituents who, in some cases, see masks as the spawn of the devil.”
Extrapolating from a poll that found 72% of Republicans and 88% of Democrats say they wear face masks in public, Boot warned “you have the makings of an out-of-control pandemic” if just one-third of those who voted for Trump in 2016 joined 8 million “similarly irresponsible Democrats” in not wearing face masks aimed at slowing the spread of the virus.
“We can and should hold our leaders responsible, but ultimately, we have no one but ourselves to blame,” added Boot, who resigned from the GOP four years ago following Trump’s election victory.
“Nobody forced so many Americans to act so recklessly — first by placing their faith in a president who doesn’t deserve it, and now in ignoring widely publicized scientific findings,” the pundit concluded. “We are living — and now dying — in an idiocracy of our own creation.”
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This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.