We Need a Timeline for Coronavirus Action
The American way of life is coming to a grinding halt over coronavirus. Events are cancelling, businesses are shuttering and people are locking down in their homes. But how long can we stay this way? Our main-street economy cannot remain in stasis forever. There are mixed messages on the local, state and federal levels. President Trump is telling the American public to lock-down for 15 days. However, state governors are talking about cases peaking in 45 days. A 100-page plan released by the U.S. Federal Government, dated March 13th, told policymakers to expect the pandemic could last 18 months or longer and could come in multiple waves. No one really knows how long this will last.
The goal of shutting down public life and quarantining people is to “flatten the curve” of infections. This means preventing an overload of cases that will flood ICU hospital beds all at once. By spreading out the infections over a longer time, we prevent mass death and chaos, but we also slow the economy. Small businesses cannot survive 18 months of the current strategy. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said unemployment could potentially reach 20% if something is not done soon.
This is why we are going to need to determine a timeline. When citizens, employees and business owners have an endpoint, it allows them to mentally and financially weather the storm. If the current strategy is held indefinitely, businesses will defy all governments and start opening. The government then is forced to either (a) ignore this and deal with skyrocketing cases or (b) deploy force against these businesses. When there is a set goal, we can limp the economy along to defeat this virus.
PC: The City.