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Biden bans term ‘China virus’ by executive order

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With Democrats in Congress focused on little else than impeaching a president who’s been out of office for a week, the actual Democratic president has been busy running the federal government single-handedly.

President Joe Biden, as of Tuesday, his seventh day in office, had handed down 40 executive orders, according to reports. That was more than Barack Obama issued in his first year, and just 15 shy of Donald Trump’s inaugural-year tally, based on National Archives numbers.

One of them, however, shows that Biden wants to harness the power of woke to exhibit control over thought and speech.

Under the guise of combating racism and “xenophobia,” Biden on Tuesday banned federal workers from referring to COVID-19 as the “China virus” – a favored term of President Trump – and other rhetoric that he believes is insensitive to Asian-Americans.

“During the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, inflammatory and xenophobic rhetoric has put Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) persons, families, communities, and businesses at risk,” the order states. “The Federal Government must recognize that it has played a role in furthering these xenophobic sentiments through the actions of political leaders, including references to the COVID-19 pandemic by the geographic location of its origin.  Such statements have stoked unfounded fears and perpetuated stigma about Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and have contributed to increasing rates of bullying, harassment, and hate crimes against AAPI persons.”

“My Administration condemns and denounces acts of racism, xenophobia, and intolerance against AAPI communities,” the document continues. Thus, the Health and Human Services Department “shall … consider issuing guidance describing best practices for advancing cultural competency, language access, and sensitivity towards Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the context of the Federal Government’s COVID-19 response.  In developing any such guidance, the Secretary should consider the best practices set forth by public health organizations and experts for mitigating racially discriminatory language in describing the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Therefore, Biden wrote, “Executive departments and agencies (agencies) shall take all appropriate steps to ensure that official actions, documents, and statements, including those that pertain to the COVID-19 pandemic, do not exhibit or contribute to racism, xenophobia, and intolerance against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.” That includes the attorney general exploring whether such actions contribute to “discrimination, bullying, harassment, and hate crimes against AAPI individuals.”

A free society can debate whether the term “China virus,” as Trump threw out regularly, is racially insensitive. And a free society can debate, based on evolving information, whether the virus emerged from natural sources or a lab experiment gone awry.

But there is no denying that the coronavirus originated in China, and calling it the “China virus” is in keeping with a long-standing practice to describe flus and other epidemics and pandemics from where they started.

Moreover, this nod to political correctness does nothing to actually contain or slow the spread of the virus – which is fitting since Biden has admitted he cannot change the “trajectory” of COVID-19.

Throughout his campaign, Biden faced speculation on whether he could be tough on our Chinese communist foes. He famously denied that China was an “opponent,” referring to it instead as a “serious competitor,” and telling voters “China is going to eat our lunch? Come on, man … They’re not competition for us.” One reason was his son Hunter’s considerable and lucrative business ties to state-run companies in Beijing.

As much as Asian-Americans could see Biden’s order has a gesture of goodwill toward them, it also could arguably be seen as a signal to the communists in Beijing that Biden won’t be a strong as his predecessor.


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