Ben Carson was once a celebrated neurosurgeon. Today he can’t figure out how to formulate an opinion on one of the most pressing medical emergencies of the past decade.
The current secretary of housing and urban development (HUD) went on ABC News’ This Week on Sunday and fumbled his way through an interview with host George Stephanopoulos, who called on him to directly address the coronavirus threat.
Carson, whose position in the administration has little to nothing to do with the viral outbreak, was tapped to represent the White House on the Sunday morning news circuit. Carson, however, seemed unprepared to address the haphazard response coming from the highest level of the federal government.
When Stephanopoulos asked him about how the administration plans to handle a 3,500 passenger cruise ship that was expected to dock in Oakland on Monday, Carson—confusing the host, himself and anybody watching—said, “Uh, the cruise ship personnel and—as you know, the Vice-President met with the CEOs of the major cruise-ship companies yesterday, and they are coming up with a plan within 72 hours of that meeting….”
Somebody with even the most rudimentary math skills could figure out that the 72-hour window that Carson gave would not be helpful given that the ship was docking in less than 36 hours. When Stephanopoulos pressed him on the time frame, the plan was now, magically coming together in time. “The plan will be in place by that time,” Carson said. “But I don’t want to preview the plan right now.”
As a representative of the White House Coronavirus Taskforce, Carson did not help, at all, to reassure anybody with doubts about the response from the Trump administration on the handling of the sometimes deadly disease. While he likened COVID-19 to other viruses like the flu and warned people to take similar precautions, this particular virus is a new strain that currently has no vaccine available to treat it.