Deaths related to COVID-19 in the United States already exceed 555,000 (at the time of writing the article) and the numbers tend to increase. More American lives have been lost in this pandemic than in the fighting of World War I and World War II combined.
But in the US superpower, the only really existing one, not only is a health pandemic unfolding. In the current most powerful country, with its social characteristics of monopoly capitalism, a social pandemic is also taking place, a class pandemic in society. A study by the University of California, San Diego, has revealed that essential workers – who are mostly immigrants, Hispanics and blacks – have suffered more infections and more deaths. The study shows that the higher mortality they suffer would be statistically associated with certain social health conditions, such as not speaking English and living in poverty.
Another study by a group of researchers from Harvard University has focused on the fact that deaths from covid-19 occur in a much higher proportion between the Hispanic and black communities, and in areas with the highest concentration of poverty. For example, adults living in households whose income was less than the country’s median income accounted for two-thirds of COVID-19 deaths. And people without a high school degree accounted for about 1 in 4 deaths.
And another study of Canadian origin shows that areas with higher proportions of heavy drinkers, children living in single-parent households, with more adults without health insurance, with more racial minorities, with more women, higher population density , higher environmental pollution and residential segregation between whites and non-whites, had higher death rates from covid-19.
And sadly, covid-19 has not only become the third cause of death in the United States since October 2020 for people aged 45 to 84 years and the second cause of death for people over 85 years of age, but also It has shown, with its cruel social consequences, the terrible class inequalities that exist in the United States.
While its leaders, be it Trump before or now Biden, boast that the United States is the world’s superpower, the tragic reality is that it has also become a pandemic superpower, a superpower in incalculable suffering for the vast majority of its people. .
But not only, with what is terrible, the deceased, and the subsequent consequences of those seriously affected by the virus. It is also the pandemic in the living and working conditions of many more millions of Americans. A social class pandemic, as the data starkly shows. The ruling class, the monopoly bourgeoisie, as Business Insider reported on October 30, increased its wealth by half a trillion (trillion) dollars in 2020, while 40 million American workers had to apply for unemployment insurance.
Millions of people who survived COVID-19 continue to face job loss and evictions. Two million people may be food insecure in the United States this year, but tackling famine is apparently not a congressional priority. Neither is the financing of infrastructures such as public schools, housing and transport.
The United States Congress has approved Biden’s $ 1.9 billion American Rescue Plan, signed on March 11, but has refused to raise the hourly minimum wage to $ 15 – which would benefit more than $ 27 million. of workers- being an obvious measure of improvement, when, in addition, the increase in the minimum wage was initially included in the new legislation in the face of the consequences of COVID. Its passage would bring long-awaited relief to low-wage workers, predominantly black, Hispanic, immigrant and female.
However, during the last legislature with Trump, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act lowered taxes on large companies by 1.5 billion dollars, causing an increase in the state deficit of 984 billion dollars and that will still skyrocket. plus federal debt in the United States.
The CARES Act and three companion measures passed in 2020, with the support of all of Congress, were crafted to ensure that the biggest beneficiaries were America’s oligopolies and oligarchic families. While the CARES Law with the left hand gave small aid to some 159 million people, with the right hand it granted tax exemptions worth billions of dollars to the monopoly bourgeoisie as a whole, at 1%.
In fact, the Congressional Joint Tax Committee itself had to recognize that five tax provisions were specifically aimed at benefiting oligarchic families, for a value equivalent to all the aid checks delivered to the most affected social sectors. Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the oligopolies’ biggest concern has not been the rise in the death toll, but the decline in their profits.
American workers need to be guaranteed a decent monthly income, protected against evictions, and have adequate access to food and health care so that they are not forced to work in unsafe conditions during the COVID pandemic. -19 just to survive.