Europe Mocked America’s Coronavirus Response – Now Cases Are Surging There

Europe Mocked America’s Coronavirus Response – Now Cases Are Surging There

Coronavirus cases are surging in Europe just months after the media pushed the narrative that Europe had the virus under control while America twiddled its thumbs.

European media leans even further left than American media, and greatly amplified the narrative that America’s response to the coronavirus had been an unmitigated failure.

To give just a small sampling of the headlines documenting the opinions of Europeans on America’s coronavirus response:

  • Coronavirus: Europe Struggles to Adapt to a Post-American World – The Conversation, May 13
  • How Did America Become a Pariah Nation of Super-Spreaders? – The Guardian, June 26
  • Europe Experts Are Looking On In Horror At the Botched U.S. Response to the Coronavirus – Business Insider, June 27
  • Europe Stunned by American Coronavirus Response as U.S. Approaches Five Million Infections – The Telegraph, August 9
  • Europeans Say COVID-19 Revealed America as “Fragile,” Inconsiderate – Newsweek, August 8
  • If the U.S. Handled COVID-19 Like Europe Did, 60,000 Americans Would Still be Alive – Fortune, August 5

A number of polls found America’s image plunging in the eyes of Europeans during the pandemic, undoubtedly fueled by narratives like this.

The notion that America had a “do nothing” response to the coronavirus is easily disproven by anyone who had experienced living in America this year. It must be news to the tens of millions who had their livelihoods put on the line in the name of science that none of that happened.

Our World In Data created a “COVID-19 Government Response Stringency Index” to objectively quantify how much action governments took in response to the virus. Their index had nine components: school closures; workplace closures; cancellation of public events; restrictions on public gatherings; closures of public transport; stay-at-home requirements; public information campaigns; restrictions on internal movements; and international travel controls. The index is updated daily, and has a value of 0 to 100, with 100 being the most strict.

And as you can see above, the U.S. has ranked near the top for most of the pandemic, dispelling the notion that we somehow did nothing. Our relative ranking is set to  change soon however, because the same European countries “bewildered” by our response months ago are going into lockdown again as cases surge there.

As Newsweek reported last week:

New COVID-19 cases diagnosed per capita across the European Union (EU) are surging in October, as nations brace for an oncoming third wave of the global outbreak. By Thursday, the number of new infections confirmed per capita in the EU had surpassed those reported in the United States, once the considered the epicenter of the pandemic.

Death tolls in the EU have also spiked, with mortality rates in Belgium and Spain surpassing those reported in the U.S. last week, while rates in Italy and Sweden continued to climb.

In response to the fall resurgence, a number of European countries, like France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands and the U.K., unveiled new restrictions for residents in efforts to mitigate further transmission. On Wednesday, Ireland became the first European nation to implement a second lockdown, which is expected to last six weeks.

And the numbers have continued to climb, as is visualized below:

For reference, the European Union has a population of 513.5 million to the U.S.’s 327.2 million, so the former is nearly 60% bigger. Despite the 60% greater population, they have more than twice as many new coronavirus cases, and thus more new cases per-capita.

Also worth noting is that Europe has eclipsed the U.S. in daily new coronavirus cases despite testing roughly half as many people per-capita. Both their current number of new cases, and cumulative cases, are likely far below their actual numbers.

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