By Casey Askar
We are now 173 days since the first case of COVID-19 was reported in China. (Dec 27 according to Axios).
In that time, thousands of people have lost their lives to coronavirus and millions more have been sickened. 30 million Americans have lost their jobs. Thousands of businesses are closing, some forever.
What Democrats and China don’t want you to know: this could have been prevented.
Starting in early December 2019, the Communist Party of China concealed the seriousness and scope of the newly discovered Wuhan Virus. The CCP lied to their people, silenced whistleblowers, and downplayed the gravity of the outbreak.
China’s lack of response to the Wuhan Virus has caused untold suffering, economic disruption, and indisputable harm to our nation. It’s time we start holding them accountable.
President Trump recognized the danger this virus posed early on and took unprecedented action to ban travel from China, and later Europe, to slow the spread.
I believe that President Trump’s early, offensive strike saved an untold amount of lives. Since then, President Trump and his administration have continued to take decisive action to flatten the curve and save Americans from this invisible enemy. Including President Trump’s decision to close our own borders.
I believe it will take continued bold leadership from President Trump and our leaders in Congress to get our country back on track.
Some leaders in Congress are taking bold action to hold China accountable. Senator Tom Cotton and Congressman Dan Crenshaw proposed legislation that would allow Americans to sue China to recover damages. I support this whole-heartedly and would call for economic reparations against China, similar to the reparations Germany had to pay after WW2, and even look at debt setoff measures against China.
Senator Rick Scott called for investigations into the World Health Organization (WHO) and the part they played with Communist China and the virus. We must continue this bold action against those culpable.
China must pay but America must rebuild. It’s not enough to rebuild the economy that was humming along beautifully before this crisis hit. We must rebuild on a new, stronger foundation.
I believe the pillars of this foundation must be:
A. return to domestic manufacturing.
For decades we have shipped off countless manufacturing jobs to China as a cheaper option. Throughout this crisis, we have learned just how costly that choice is. Shortages of life-saving equipment ravaged the American market in the early days of the crisis. Instead of depending on our own resources, we were forced to look to China, the epicenter of the Wuhan Virus, for help.
This must end. In order to rebuild a stronger, better American economy we must continue to incentivize our businesses to come home and manufacture more products “Made in the USA.”
- An end to losing foreign policy.
Administration after administration has been plagued with bad foreign policy designed to pacify other countries instead of advancing American interests. Bad actors like China have used our perceived weakness to enrich their country – stealing unknown value in intellectual property, buying over a trillion dollars in U.S. debt, and, until recently, being on the winning end of trade negotiations.
President Trump’s America First policies are a strong step in the right direction to fixing decades of bad deal making. We must continue to fight for our country through sound, strong, and winning foreign policy that builds up our interests not those of our competitors.
- Protecting our American businesses.
It’s vital that we protect our American businesses from coronavirus-related liability. Our employers cannot be afraid to open their doors because a customer or employee might seek legal action against them if they contract the coronavirus. American businesses have complied with necessary precautions enforced by local, state, and federal governments, and have seen devastating economic losses.
Using these three ideals as a foundation, I believe we can build a better more resilient American economy. However, we must not forget who is responsible for this crisis in the first place. China must pay, and America must rebuild. Our survival depends on it.
Casey Askar is a U.S. Marine and a long-standing Naples businessman who employs thousands of people across the country. The Askar Family Office portfolio encompasses food-service franchise brands and commercial real estate. Askar is one of the largest franchisees for various multi-national brands, such as Church’s Chicken and Dunkin’ Donuts. On top of that, Askar is a franchisor of four different pizza brands throughout the country.