Given the various ways the disease caused by coronavirus is capitalized, you can be forgiven for not understanding exactly what it is.
Across the internet, it’s been stylized as COVID-19, Covid-19, CovID-19, and a rash of others. But it is an acronym, standing for Corona Virus Disease (So it really should be stylized CoViD). The 19 at the end stands for 2019, the year this virus came into the world.
It’s reasonable to not know that, given the various inconsistencies, unless you are, say, a top White House official who is working on a response to the outbreak.
Kellyanne Conway thought the 19 meant the World Health Organization had 19 tries to get it right.
Conway was on Fox News to discuss the decision to cut funding to the WHO when she busted out that gem.
“This is COVID-19, not COVID-1 folks, and so you would think the people in charge of the World Health Organization, facts and figures, would be on top of that,” Conway said.
While she’s not entirely wrong (i.e., there have been coronavirus outbreaks before), COVID-1 would not stand for the first every coronavirus but rather a novel coronavirus that broke out in 2001.
Given her misunderstanding of that basic premise, it was only fair she got some well-intentioned ribbing from the internet.
The segment concluded with Conway admonishing people to “know the facts.”