As California pumps the brakes on its reopening plans, L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti likewise took the time to say he is putting a “hard pause” on many planned reopenings, including movie theaters, concert venues, theme parks and playgrounds, in addition to prohibiting Fourth of July fireworks displays. Calling it a “time for a collective course correction” over the next two “critical” weeks, he concluded that this time was “our second big test.”
Garcetti is right to be concerned, as coronavirus cases are surging in both California and Los Angeles. In L.A. County specifically, more than 100,000 confirmed cases have been documented, with more than 3,300 deaths. Barbara Ferrer, the country’s director of public health, said there were “alarming increases” in cases and positivity rates for infection. Her derpartment announced 2,903 new cases of the virus on Monday, which is the biggest one-day increase since the beginning of the pandemic. One can only fear how much higher those daily numbers could climb, which makes it understandable why people in movie theaters is probably the last thing we need right now.
On a wider scale, meanwhile, California Gov. Gavin Newsom also announced the state’s willingness to close down counties “that are not effective in their remediation efforts,” according to Variety. Only a day earlier, Newsom ordered bars and restaurants to close in Fresno, Imperial, Los Angeles, Kings, Kern, Tulare and San Joaquin counties in response to rising coronavirus cases in those locations. Bars had been open in L.A. since only June 19.
Newsom likewise tweeted that the state’s response was “based on science,” and that residents should expect to see these “appropriate actions” continue for as long as necessary.