In 2020, people talk about “two Americas.” During the coronavirus outbreak, there is one America, a sheltered America, with people who — like me — can work at home. And another America, an edgier America, that stands to be devastated by coronavirus closures.
There is also a third America that can be seen in the three states hardest hit by COVID-19 and virtually shut down. In order to keep the rest of America from turning into that third America, sheltered America argues, stringent measures must be imposed on all of America.
To which edgy America responds: If elected officials close up America for one month or two months, what will be left?
When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggested a lid on gatherings of 50 people for eight weeks, Cathy Merrill, owner of Washingtonian Magazine, which employs some 75 people, wrote in The Washington Post that the so-called eight-week “hiatus” could serve as a “death sentence” for her business. While she was working at home, Merrill wondered how many of those setting emergency policy have ever run a small business.
I write this from my dining room table. I showed symptoms for coronavirus and had covered an event attended by someone who later learned he was infected. I saw a doctor. I’m in home lockdown for two weeks. I don’t know if I have COVID-19 because I have not been able to take the test.