Last week, Florida took an important step forward in their Coronavirus response by abruptly moving to Phase 3 of their reopening plan. Governor Ron DeSantis reminded people that it has now been six months since state economies were shut down, and it’s time for citizens to take back their lives. But as more states eye reopening on a large scale, expect more turmoil.
Most states have been operating under extremely tight restrictions. The government is dictating when businesses can be open and to how many guests. They also say where customers can receive service and in what capacity. In some cases, ig can even issue a fine to a business if a guest arrives without a mask on. Individuals have become accustomed to standing far apart from each other, wearing a face covering at all times, not visiting with relatives, and losing all social contact outside of their households.
The divisions remain to run deep, and many emotions stay attached. There are the maskers and the anti-maskers. Those that will not send their children to school, and those that do. There are those that take personal offense to the existence of a social gathering. These people insist that it somehow endangers their life. There are those whose incomes have not been affected, and those who are nearing the end of their unemployment benefits.
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As states open up, these divisions will continue to grow. It will happen as those that fear for their lives become angry, isolated hermits. Meanwhile, those that resume normal life are branded as “dangerous” and “inconsiderate.”
What to Expect
Judgement & Peer Policing
As states open, whether or not you agree with the opening will have to take a back seat to your basic needs. Most people have to work, and will return to work out of necessity. But in an effort to protect their health, expect constant judgement and peer policing on proper mask-wearing and social distancing. Some people will see everyone as a possible enemy and carrier of disease. Basic social interactions will become strained as people treat one another with suspicion.
A Second Wave of Shutdowns
Government leaders have shown their true colors: they are drunk with the power they hold over their constituents. The continued strict regulations in states like California, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania show just how tightly governors will hold on to executive orders that are not justified by current case counts and hospitalizations. As soon as cases rise amid reopening efforts, expect a second wave of shutdowns. Even if hospitalizations and deaths remain low, governors will point to case numbers as reason enough to bankrupt entire communities.
Some People Will Move
As restrictions and shutdowns extend for longer and longer periods of time, eventually some people will move to more open states. When jobs disappear and do not return, the cost of living will become unreasonable. People will move to a place where they can work and move freely.
Restrictions Will Become the Norm
In just a few months, we were conditioned to believe that being allowed to eat inside a restaurant is a privilege. We allowed establishments to take our temperatures before entering any business. Just as we accepted full body pat-downs at the airport, we are accepting extreme restrictions in our everyday lives, from where and when we can travel, to where we can wait for a table in a restaurant, to how many people can be inside of an elevator. Slowly but surely, our every move is being regulated.
A Push for Cashless Society
In the name of “safety,” businesses are moving to cash-free forms of payment. This means that every single transaction in your life can be tracked – every place and every dollar amount. The government will know every detail of your financial situation, and every place you were at every moment. This could also lead to a bigger black market.
While many Americans have waited anxiously for a nationwide reopening, there may be just as many who fear such a thing. They have been brainwashed into believing that these restrictions and regulations are for “the greater good,” and this is the “new normal” going forward. States still choose on an individual level when and how to reopen. This will only create deeper rifts between the two camps. The longer that some states stay shut down, the deeper the divisions between open and closed states will become.
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