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EDITORIAL: Staying patient while reopening

EDITORIAL: Staying patient while reopening

An editorial from the Cheshire Herald: 


It seems to be in short supply these days at times — just when we all need it the most.

As Connecticut begins the second stage of its reopening plan, with an eye towards phase-three a month from now, the numbers continue to head in the right direction. The number of deaths related to the virus continues to decrease over daily averages and the number of patients currently hospitalized for COVID-19 is barely above 200.

That’s why the state continues its reopening procedures, and why Governor Ned Lamont has shown no indication of changing the trajectory of that reopening.

But all of it is going to require a bit of patience on everyone’s part.

Life is going to look different for a while. If you’re planning a night out at your favorite restaurant for the first time since March, understand that things have changed. There may be more you need to do to secure a seat, and more asked of you when you arrive. There will be more emphasis on cleanliness, and it’s all but guaranteed that the trappings of “fine dining” will take a backseat to hygiene.

Not everyone or every establishment is going to adhere to these new restrictions perfectly. That doesn’t automatically mean they are flouting the rules or being purposefully difficult. It’s a new world we are all entering at the moment, and the more rules you put in place, the less likely it is that people will remember all of them all the time. 

Here in Connecticut, people have been essentially in their homes with nothing resembling normal human contact for more than three months. That does something to a person. It frays nerves. It makes them agitated. It creates a tense environment. 

Businesses and municipal facilities are beginning to open up, many for the first time, and are feeling the pressure to get things back up and running as quickly as possible. Owners are faced with providing a safe and healthy environment for customers and staff, and adhering to a whole new set of requirements, all while trying to breath life back into their establishments. That’s a lot to ask.

The world is providing enough pressure points at the moment without individual citizens adding to the stress. Not every perceived rule-break is a cause for alarm or a reason to file a complaint with a local official. Not every request to follow the new rules is a direct challenge to personal liberties or the ideals on which America was founded. Not everyone you see standing less than six feet from the person with whom they are speaking is purposefully disregarding the virus and putting lives at risk. Not every person you see taking extra precautions is demanding that you do the same.

The state is opening back up. We cannot stay inside forever. Slowly, cautiously, we are beginning to get outside and around one another again. As we reintroduce ourselves to “normal” life, cutting everyone, including ourselves, some slack could go a long way to making this difficult process as smooth as possible.


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