This is a mask of former President Donald Trump and not Trump himself. The real Trump suggested at … [+] the Republican National Committee’s first spring donor retreat that the Covid-19 vaccine should be named after him.
Would you ever get something called a “Trumpcine?” Depends on what it protects against may be your answer.
Well, on Saturday night, former U.S. President and current Mar-A-Lago resident Donald Trump mentioned that very name during the Republican National Committee’s first spring donor retreat. Josh Dawsey a reporter for the Washington Post tweeted that “Trump says someone came to him, who he refers to as ‘sir,’ and suggested that it be called a ‘Trumpcine.’” It’s not quite clear who “sir” maybe but apparently “it” is the Covid-19 vaccine. Yes, it seems like Trump was suggesting that the available Covid-19 vaccines should be named after, chicken drumstick roll please, himself.
Well, sir, typically, a vaccine is named after the disease that it is supposed to protect against. For example, the measles vaccine is designed to protect against measles, the flu vaccine against the flu, and the hepatitis B vaccine against hepatitis B. In theory, a cupcake vaccine would protect against attacks by cupcakes or becoming a cupcake. So in turn would a Trumpcine actually protect against Trump? Or is Trump suggesting that the Covid-19 coronavirus be renamed the “Trump virus?”
Trump has been trying to take credit for the Covid-19 vaccine. Last month, Bess Levin wrote for Vanity Fair a piece entitled “Donald Trump Demands Americans Picture His Face While COVID Vaccine Enters Their Bodies.” Now, it’s not clear how maintaining such a picture in your mind may impact the side effects that may have when getting the Covid-19 vaccine. In the piece, Levin referred to a statement issued by Trump’s office that said, “I hope everyone remembers when they’re getting the Covid-19 (often referred to as the China Virus) Vaccine, that if I wasn’t president, you wouldn‘t be getting that beautiful ‘shot’ for 5 years, at best, and probably wouldn’t be getting it at all. I hope everyone remembers!”
Often referred to as the China Virus? By which real scientists and public health experts exactly? Did Trump forget the words “by me” at the end of that phrase?
As a reminder, Trump has about as many scientific degrees as a cinder block. He neither initiated nor conducted research that led to the Covid-19 vaccines. Work on such vaccines actually had started well before Trump’s term as President. The original severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) outbreak in 2002 had prompted researchers around the world to explore how to develop a coronavirus vaccine, although these efforts slowed considerably due to lack of funding. At the same time, work on mRNA vaccine technology, in general, had already started back in the 1990s, as Damian Garde and Jonathan Saltzman have described for STAT. In fact, through each of the first three years of his Presidency, Trump sought to cut funding to scientific organizations like the National Institutes of Health (NIH). So who knows how much further along the Covid-19 vaccines could have been having the Trump Administration been more supportive of scientific research.
The Trump Administration’s Operation Warp Speed, which coincidentally is OWS for short, did provide funding to companies like Moderna in 2020 to develop their Covid-19 vaccine. However, as The New York Times reported, Pfizer has insisted that “We were never part of the Warp Speed. We have never taken any money from the U.S. government, or from anyone.” Plus, OWS did make numerous missteps, including a Covid-19 vaccine roll-out that fell far short of goal in December and January, as I covered previously for Forbes. Moreover, it’s not clear how of OWS can be credited to Trump as others such as Anthony Fauci, MD, the Director of the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) appeared to have done a lot of work.
Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases Anthony Fauci smiles as White … [+] House Press Secretary Jen Psaki (L) speaks to reporters during the daily briefing in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, DC.
Speaking of Fauci, Trump didn’t exactly offer a “thank you” to Fauci on Saturday night. That’s unless, you think Trump saying, “Have you ever seen anybody that is so full of bleep?” The last word wasn’t really “bleep” but rather a word that starts with a “cr” like the word “cringe” and rhymes with “tourist trap” and “golf cap.” And the answer to Trump’s questions could be, “there are people
Trump’s use of the word “Trumpcine” exemplifies some broader problems in our society. One is political leaders and others not giving credit to scientists who actually did the work to bring technology to the market. Putting Trump or some other politicians in a laboratory with some test tubes is probably not likely to yield much. Another issue is the myth that one person is responsible for a scientific breakthrough. Whenever a breakthrough occurs, it is usually the result of many people working on the same problem for many years. People can make it seem like scientific research is like Tony Stark disappearing into a lab by himself for a few days and then coming up with a brilliant discovery. That just doesn’t happen much, unless the discovery is something trivial like a toilet brush shaped like Harry Styles. Real-life isn’t like movies, TV, or even reality TV. At least, it shouldn’t be.