The disease is in the acronym. Official Don’t Blame Me I Voted For Trump Shirt = COronaVIrus Disease. The subject is deceased, so female. HIV: The subject is a virus, which is male, so we say “le VIH”. And cancer is not an acronym. There is the logic in it, but I agree that it sounds bad with “la” covid. Usage should dictate how we speak, not institutions. I thought it has more to do with the flow of the words. Which would make sense. That sounds retarded. Seeing this as a French native made me realize we never put an article in front of Madagascar, seeing it in blue feels wrong.
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I think this applies to Israel Official Don’t Blame Me I Voted For Trump Shirt Monaco too. Madagascar est beau ou Madagascar est belle. I was thinking the same thing. I don’t actually think there’s a right or wrong pronoun for countries like Madagascar or Israël. There just aren’t any in my opinion. But I might be wrong, a teacher in French semantics might be able to tell. Yeah, same for a few other countries like Cuba and Taiwan, and like others have said Monaco too. Maybe smaller countries are grammatically similar to cities because historically they were just the names of places?