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An associate professor of political science at Lincoln University will host a virtual presentation Monday on "The Politics of Coronavirus."
Darius Watson, who holds a doctorate in international relations and foreign policy, will discuss how the coronavirus is transforming America. His areas of expertise include national security strategies and international terrorism.
Watson will invite discussion and comments after his talk.
The presentation is 6-7:30 p.m. Monday.
A link to the Zoom meeting can be found on "The Politics of Coronavirus" event page on Facebook.
The event is part of the Lincoln University and Missouri River Regional Library lecture series.
The presentation will be based on Watson's essay, "The Covid Conundrum," based on the idea the coronavirus has exposed some of America's pre-existing conditions. He writes about the problems that have made this national crisis different from others.
"Those issues revolve around the visions that in typical periods of national emergency wouldn't exist," Watson said. "My frame of reference is 9/11 — I remember 9/11 vividly, and there's not the same level of national unity coming together on any level."
Watson will discuss how regionalism has been accentuated by the rural and urban divide and the impact of the coronavirus.
"The coronavirus — and specifically the government reactions to it — have really exposed everything from a long-standing history of federal versus anti-federalism debate in America right down to today's contemporary kind of rural versus urban perspectives of American culture and how different they can be."
He will also discuss the international perspective of the pandemic.
Watson said he believes the U.S. government should be taking initiative to be a leader in this time of crisis.
"America is really not engaging a position of leadership, whether it's being a buyer of medical supplies and PPE and things like that or attacking the World Health Organization," he said.
Watson fears there will be another wave of the coronavirus, which makes the 2020 presidential election the most important presidential election in his lifetime, he said.
"Whoever is president will be rebuilding the country and preparing us for the next coronavirus," he said.
Watson said he tries to be objective on this issue by looking at data and multiple perspectives.
"My approach is trying to take a measured look at things and understand how our society's kind of responding to this point of crisis," he said.