Fighting Over What to Call Coronavirus Is a Silly Waste of Time

Amid all of the well-placed urgency and occasionally misplaced panic of the COVID-19 pandemic, many have decided there’s a pressing need to debate whether terms such as “Wuhan virus” or “Chinese coronavirus” are racist.

On one side is a broad coalition that includes liberal pundits, Democratic politicians, the World Health Organization and the Chinese government.

“Calling it the ‘Chinese coronavirus’ isn’t just racist,” Sen. Kamala Harris tweeted, “it’s dangerous and incites discrimination against Asian Americans and Asian immigrants.” 

Rep. Judy Chu (D-California), chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, says, “Calling the 2019 novel coronavirus the ‘Chinese’ or ‘Wuhan’ coronavirus is as descriptive as calling it the ‘CPAC coronavirus’—that is to say not descriptive at all.”

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