Today I took Penny for her daily run. I went down to the Embarcadero to see how the opening of the boat launch has impacted the area. Vehicle and pedestrian traffic was light, and the city has turned the sidewalks into one way with each side of the street in opposite directions. I stopped and picked up my mail and packages.
San Luis Obispo County reported just one new confirmed case of COVID-19 today, bringing the county’s total to 202 cases as of May 4. Currently, five people are hospitalized, including three patients who are in the ICU. According to county health, another 40 people are recovering at home, and 156 people have recovered. The county has had one death attributed to COVID-19. Health officials report a total of 3,445 coronavirus tests administered in San Luis Obispo County at the public health lab and private labs.
Following dozens of protests throughout California, Gov. Gavin Newsom today announced plans to begin to reopen the economy on Friday. Under modification that he will announce on Thursday, Newsom plans to allow some manufacturing and retail stores to open. The list includes clothing stores, toy stores, flower shops, and sporting goods stores, utilizing curbside pickup. Newsom also plans to allow counties that have met benchmarks related to stabilizing hospitalizations, securing medical supplies, and having the ability to track and trace coronavirus infections, to move further into phase two. In those select counties, restaurants and hospitality businesses will be permitted to reopen with modifications. Newson also removed his order closing beaches in Orange County. Following his beach closure order, multiple members of the public went to the closed beaches, while local law enforcement refused to enforce the order. Several California counties also declined to follow Newsom’s order, relaxing their shelter at home rules last week.
President Trump took a shot at California for wanting to keep people from crossing over the southern border into the state due to the coronavirus pandemic, while regularly welcoming and protecting undocumented immigrants via sanctuary policies. Mexico had a total of 22,088 COVID-19 cases as of May 2, and officials in southern California have sought assistance in reducing cases in the U.S. that stem from border crossings. “Mexico is sadly experiencing very big coronavirus problems, and now California, get this, doesn’t want people coming over the Southern Border,” Trump tweeted Monday morning. “A Classic! They are sooo lucky that I am their President. The border is very tight, and the Wall is rapidly being built!
One of the urgent care doctors whose video panning stay-at-home orders was removed from YouTube has lauded Sweden for its approach to the coronavirus pandemic. Dr. Dan Erickson joined Jon Scott on Fox News Saturday night and reacted to YouTube censoring his April video, in which he argued stay-at-home orders across the country needed lifting. He pointed to how Sweden has tackled the virus without a nationwide lockdown. “Basically, looking at the Swedish model. … I think that Dr. Giesecke and Dr. Tegnell have done a great job at taking a more conservative approach where kids under 16 are in school, businesses are open, people are practicing social isolation, and groups less than 50 are limited,” Erickson said. “And when I looked at their numbers compared to ours and compared to the United Kingdom, I think they’re doing quite well.” Sweden has been criticized for not enforcing a nationwide lockdown on citizens. Children in the country are still able to attend school despite the coronavirus and many businesses have remained open. Modeling data suggested 20 percent of Stockholm’s population is already immune to the virus and that the slow decline in cases is evidence that the number will continue to get higher over the next few weeks. “They’re trusting their people to make good decisions about social isolation. Also, they don’t have a several trillion-dollar free-falling economy that they may not come back from for a long time. They don’t have people out of work in food lines,” Erickson said. “We’ve gone backward so far. I’m a physician. I want to care for people the best I can, and when I see collateral damage that’s significant in our country and people are calling me with depression, with anxiety. I had a friend’s relative who committed suicide or tried to commit suicide yesterday from depression because he got laid off from his job. There are so many things happening that I’m calling collateral damage from COVID that I think it’s time to take a look and say, ‘Is the collateral damage outweighing the virus itself?’ And the damage that is causing to the medical field?” he added. Erickson, whose YouTube video was criticized by fellow medical professionals, also addressed the censoring of his video when he was asked, “Essentially, you got censored by the plug pullers at YouTube, right?” “Look at what George Soros said about Facebook back in February. He said Mark Zuckerberg should no longer have control of Facebook. Well, YouTube, you’re going to be next. Soros will say that you should no longer have control, and the government should have control of Facebook, according to George Soros,” Erickson said.
The so-called ‘Cancel the Rent’ movement has been garnering public support from politicians like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. However, experts believe it should move past canceling rent payments outright and more focused on finding solutions that help both sides during the corona virus pandemic. It comes at a time as some Americans who have lost there jobsor had their pay cut are finding themselves in an increasingly difficult situation as they must find ways to cover their rent without the income they used to have. On the other side of the coin, landlords are concerned that if rent isn’t paid, they will struggle with their bills, such as building maintenance and state property taxes. The social movement has gained significant support on social media, with #CancelRent trending and protesters holding online video rallies.Jay Martin, executive director of the Community Housing Network told Fox News that elected officials need to find a solution that does not financially hurt either party. “Basically when elected officials come out and say they are supporting things like the cancel rent movement and proposing that they are supporting rent strikes, they’re essentially supporting the inability for folks to pay the bills that the government is putting on them directly,” Martin said. “So, it’s a problem, and it’s not something we support.” Northwestern adjunct law professor Andrew Stoltmann joins Trace Gallagher to discuss the fear of evictions amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Stoltmann believes one solution could be the government giving property tax relief to landlords. This, he said, could help both sides. “That is the most direct way that landlords can provide flexibility for those who can’t pay the rent,” Martin said. “Thirty percent of the average monthly rent check in New York is already paid right back to the city in property taxes – so that is a huge amount of flexibility an owner would have to work out a rent deal with a tenant.” Stotmann added, “We are asking and advocating for the federal government to provide some sort of direct voucher to those tenants who maybe don’t qualify for unemployment benefits or have somehow fallen through the cracks of the relief that has already been applied.”.
Kayakers are entering Morro Bay from the boat launch.
A boater uses the recently opened boat launch.