The “Sleeping Giant” needs to awaken to COVID-19 and defeat our invisible enemy, together

Alex Howard
2 min readOct 2, 2020

The United States continues to suffer from a devastating pandemic. Our union still has not taken the basic steps necessary to suppress this pandemic, and it’s costing us dearly every day we don’t act with purpose, learning from other nations that took the steps necessary to serve and protect those who have least amongst us.

We need a real “national pause” to mourn, reflect, heal, learn, and prepare, followed by:

1) a universal mask mandate

2) limiting the conditions for super-spreading events — avoid unmasked crowds inside poorly ventilated spaces

3) deploying cheap, rapid tests everywhere, while building contact tracing capacity.

We need a national mobilization like in World War II, revving up our engines of democracy to build and deploy an arsenal of public health tools, from masks & PPE to tests to mobile clinics to field hospitals and outdoor schools.

We need to extend health care to everyone through Medicare, Medicaid, & subsidized private insurance plans using the ACA. The goal should be 99% insured, just like Massachusetts, where the model behind the ACA was originally born.

We need stimulus specifically targeted to low wage workers so they can stay home if they’re sick.

We need broadband Internet access and a computer for every child in the nation, to ensure families aren’t left further behind in remote schooling, on the other side of the pre-existing homework gap.

We will hear that all of that costs too much, but we should be honest about the costs of NOT doing enough, after months of a failed national response: 200,000+ dead, economic devastation, virtual schooling, deteriorating public health.

We need all hands on board. No one else is coming to help.



Alex Howard

Dad, writer, citizen, chef, cyclist, skeptical optimist, cereal dilettante. Open government advocate at