×

World War II slogan ‘We can do it’ resurrected during pandemic

We Americans have paid a high price — more than 56,000 deaths as of Tuesday — for not stockpiling enough medical equipment and personal protective devices to cope with the COVID-19 onslaught. But here, some states seem to have begun flattening that a statistical curve you read so much about. A few are relaxing personal and business restrictions.

What now? Do we just begin the process of getting back to “normal?”

We can’t do that. We are Americans. We are renowned for rushing to the aid of those in other countries during their times of need.

COVID-19 has become a crisis throughout the world. By Tuesday, it had killed more than 212,000 people worldwide. Many of them in other countries lack the industrial infrastructure we enjoy that has mobilized to meet the coronavirus crisis.

Throughout our nation, companies that specialized in manufacturing everything from chemical sanitizers to medical ventilators have increased production dramatically. Other firms in different lines of work have converted production lines to turn out the self-defense products we need.

Americans have resurrected a slogan used during World War II to increase output of critical materials: We can do it.

We have done it, to the point that some states where the COVID-19 crisis seems to have peaked have shipped equipment such as ventilators to others where it is needed more.

At some point, we need to remember another aspect of our heritage. It is helping others throughout the world.

COVID-19 is taking terrible tolls in many parts of the globe. U.S. health care materials and equipment can save lives there.

Of course, we need to ensure domestic requirements are satisfied first. But once that is done, we Americans likely will aid others, as we did after both world wars, when food and fuel shipment from here saved millions of lives overseas.

Shipments of such assistance will go to wherever they are needed most urgently, using our military’s incredible carrying capacity.

Will such aid earn us any new friends in the world? Probably not, but that is not the point.

It is simply that when we can, we help others in need. We’re Americans.

That’s what we do.

Newsletter

Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)