Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday outlined new guidelines for a phased reopening New York from the coronavirus lockdown in place since late March. The reopening would begin after his New York State on PAUSE executive order ends May 15.
For some New Yorkers, that’s not good enough. They believe the lockdown should end now.
In the critics’ view, the COVID-19 threat has been exaggerated, and stay-at-home orders are an overreaction. They believe the economic damage caused by the lockdown is a graver risk. U.S. GDP fell nearly 5 percent in the first quarter, the government reported this morning, and a far-larger contraction in the second quarter is expected.
On the other side are health care experts and others who maintain that strict measures taken to halt the spread of the coronavirus are necessary to prevent a soaring death toll due to a high infection rate and asymptomatic transmission. They also believe uncontrolled spread of COVID-19 would cause even more economic damage than the current lockdown and planned phased reopening.
As of April 28, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported New York had 287,607 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 21,883 deaths. In Monroe County, the official count was 1,342 confirmed cases and 112 deaths.
In today’s Up for Debate, the Rochester Beacon presents two views on the governmental response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the question of how quickly the lockdown should be lifted.
By Jim Ryan Jr.
To truly beat the coronavirus, replace government mandates with individual initiative, judgment and responsibility. Let Americans take back control of their lives.
By Kent Gardner
We still don’t know enough to determine if the policy response to the coronavirus has been too restrictive—or not restrictive enough.