The last time a U.S. President invoked the Insurrection Act was in response to the 1992 L.A. Riots. This vignette highlights how federal forces were mobilized to address the unrest in L.A.
The federal response to the pandemic has been slow and uneven. And it is true that our civic institutions will sometimes let us down and fail to deliver on what Americans need. But, when they do, it is to other civilians — not the military — that we must turn. The military can’t save us from COVID-19, and we shouldn’t ask it to.