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Protesters fill streets in frustration with “stay at home” regulations

By Gabriela Mendez

As of right now, on the website ‘Worldometer,’ there have been reported to be around 1,004,942 cases of COVID-19 and around 56,527 deaths due to the virus in the U.S. 

Many states are still being strict on prioritizing the public’s health over the economy and are maintaining the “safer at home” executive order in order to lessen the number of cases and deaths due to the virus. But there are some states that are planning to lift it and start operating normally to follow through with Trump’s recovery blueprint he stated recently in a white house press conference so that the economy can recover from COVID-19. 

States such as Tennesee, Georgia, and South Carolina are releasing restrictions and encouraging their businesses to reopen.

On Monday, April 20, CNN reported that Georgia Republican, Gov. Brian Kemp announced that fitness centers, bowling alleys, body art studios, barbers, hair and nail salons, and massage therapy businesses may reopen as of Friday, April 24. Restaurants and theaters can reopen as of Monday, April 27, but bars and nightclubs will remain closed. 

Yet, there has been a mix of feelings among the public, with some saying it is too soon for states to re-open as the number of cases and death toll in the U.S. seem to rise these past few days with the increase of people getting testing done. However, others find it is time to re-open and return their freedom to benefit the economy. 

These states and companies that are not planning to follow through just yet with Trump’s plan to benefit the economy are concerned with contributing to the potentially triggering another round of COVID-19 that could cause business clouser once again for more weeks or months. 

Rich Lesser, chief executive of the Boston Consulting Group, stated in The New York Times that, “It’s hard enough to shut an economy down once, having to do it twice carries far greater damage.” 

But other people said that it’s time to re-open for the economy and prioritize that over the public’s health. 

Even the president of the United States, Donald Trump, tweeted “Liberate Minnesota,” and then “Liberate Michigan,” and “Liberate Virginia, and save your great 2nd Amendment. It is under siege!” 

These tweets have led right-wing people to go to the streets and outside of their states capitol buildings demanding for their states to re-open. They have been seen walking around with guns, which has been an element that The Washington Post has reported has been seen in states such as Wisconsin, Michigan, Washington and Ohio.  

These protestors have also been seen walking around with signs saying “my body, my choice,” a slogan mostly used for “pro choice” protests against those who want to ban abortion that are the same people using this slogan now to demand quarantine to be over. 

These protestors have also been faced with counter-protestors, where groups of nurses have been seen such as in Denver blocking these protestors sending the message they disagree with these protestors. 

The Washington Post was able to get a quote from one of the protestors, Mary Conley. She stated that “death is a part of life… and it’s time to start living again.” 

With that being said, these same people who are preaching that it is time to start living again are jeopardizing the lives of millions in the U.S., who are practicing social distancing to be able to return to their lives so that no one else is affected by COVID-19. 

By only thinking of the economy, these people are increasing the chances of spread of the virus and its death toll to worsen. By doing that, they are not practicing the “safer at home” executive order and hurting others.

Gabriela Mendez can be reached at gabriela.mendez@spartans.ut.edu

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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