The Seattle metropolitan area was the first place in America to be hit by the novel coronavirus pandemic and, fortunately for us, local and state leaders were smart enough to believe the warnings of medical experts and take quick action. Gov. Jay Inslee, Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, King County Executive Dow Constantine and many others have worked together to deal with the daunting challenge that continues to threaten the health and lives of citizens in this corner of the country.

Like many other local and state officials throughout the United States, leaders here were way ahead of the Trump administration in recognizing the dimensions of the COVID-19 threat. President Donald Trump, in particular, dithered for weeks, first treating reports of the pandemic as fake news and then repeatedly describing it as a minor problem that would quickly pass.

Finally, Trump is taking the challenge more seriously, but if he really wants to display leadership, he should emulate the governors and mayors and county executives, as well as school officials and health-care professionals, who have done all the heavy lifting thus far.

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