Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY) claimed during an interview this last week that the United States has “not earned the right” to call itself a “humane society.”
Ocasio-Cortez made the remarks during an interview on far-left Democracy Now! about the coronavirus outbreak as she pounced on the opportunity to attack the Trump administration.
“We should have universal systems where every person can see the doctor free of charge when they need to see it so that they can get the care that they need,” Ocasio-Cortez said. “That is what it means to live in an advanced and modern and humane society, and so long as we don’t do that, we have not earned the right to call ourselves one.”
.@AOC blames Trump for Coronavirus deaths, particularly among illegal immigrants, in NYC:
These "are deaths of incompetence, they are deaths of science denial, they are deaths of inequality and … [a] particular cruelty toward undocumented immigrants" pic.twitter.com/GeDmdkAMym
— Tom Elliott (@tomselliott) April 7, 2020
DEMOCRACY NOW: Overall, your response to President Trump, his antagonism against any kind of criticism, the well-known documented lack of tests, lack of PPE, protective gear for people who work in hospitals, and now this, saying “Sure, test them before we deport them.”
REP. ALEXANDRIA OCASIO-CORTEZ (D-NY): Well overall, you know, uh, not just President Trump but this entire administration knew what was coming. Trump knew this pandemic was coming. The military knew this pandemic was coming. The CDC knew this pandemic was coming. HHS Health and Human Services knew this pandemic was coming, and there was a structural but also universal refusal to acknowledge and more importantly to act, and this pandemic is, you know, and and the casualties that we are seeing are, again, not just due to coronavirus.
There are people dying unnecessarily, as you mentioned earlier, there are people not just dying in hospitals. In New York City City alone, we are seeing 200 to 300 people dying in their homes a day, per day in New York City inside their homes in addition to the hospitalizations. These numbers that you’re seeing, all in all, many of them are confirmed coronavirus cases, as you mentioned, many people do not have access to tests, so a lot of these deaths that you are seeing, there are many more that are uncounted that are being counted as pneumonia or being counted as other causes of death because those people were not able to get a COVID-19 test. And so, these additional deaths, many of them are unnecessary, they are deaths of incompetence, they are deaths of science denial, they are deaths of inequality, and so it’s important for us to acknowledge how unnecessary the level of crisis that we are at right now that is due to the incompetence of this administration, that is due to the lack of responsiveness [of] this administration. And when it comes to the particular cruelty to undocumented immigrants, it is also a form of denial of the fact that many of these undocumented people pay taxes, they fund our public schools, and they fund a very public health system that they are being denied access to right now through the billions of dollars of taxes that they pay, billions more, by the way, these undocumented workers pay billions more in taxes than Facebook does, than Amazon does, and than many other corporations do. And so when it comes to contributions to our public systems, they do far more than these than these corporations do, and it’s extraordinarily important that they have safe access to our public health system, and by the way, it shouldn’t just be for COVID-19 cases, our public health system should be free at the point of service for every single person in this country.
There are folks that are saying, “Oh, you’ll get paid sick leave if it’s COVID-19 related,” as we’re seeing with Amazon, they’ll take your fever, if you don’t have a test, then you will not receive paid sick leave. We should have universal systems where every person can see the doctor free of charge when they need to see it so that they can get the care that they need, that is what it means to live in an advanced and modern and humane society, and so long as we don’t do that, we have not earned the right to call ourselves one.