Reopening the United States Economy: Myths and Realities

By Abayomi Azikiwe / May 10, 2020

There are tremendous economic and political pressures emanating from the White House and the corporate community to “reopen” the United States economy.

At present the U.S.  has outstripped all other countries in the world in the number of COVID-19 infections and deaths. As of May 6, 1,171,510 people have been confirmed with the virus while 68,279 of this number lost their lives to the disease. On the international scale, there are 3,588,773 cases and 247,503 deaths spanning 215 countries, areas and territories.

In large municipalities such as New York City, Chicago, New Orleans, Los Angeles and Detroit, where the rapid spread of the pandemic alarmed the world during March and April, it appears as if the number of infections and deaths are declining. Governors and mayors of these states and cites enacted shelter-in-place orders and public emergencies minimizing the concentrations of people on the streets, in schools, businesses, religious institutions and workplaces.

Nonetheless, people are still contracting the virus resulting in hospitalizations and deaths. Healthcare systems are overwhelmed in part due to the lack of personal protective equipment (PPE), high infection rates among medical professionals and support staff along with the economic toll taken on the systems which are controlled by private interests.

The state of Michigan and the city of Detroit are considered “hot spots” in the pandemic where rates of infection and deaths have been some of the highest in the nation and the world. Michigan has confirmed 43,950 cases of COVID-19 resulting in 4,135 deaths. Detroit, the largest city in the state, leads in the number of infections with 9,424 and 1,108 fatalities….

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