Reading the news from Italy is depressing. It might be us a month from now.
Now I find myself confined in a place where time is suspended. All the shops are closed, except for groceries and pharmacies. All the bars and restaurants are shuttered. Every tiny sign of life has disappeared. The streets are totally empty; it is forbidden even to take a walk unless you carry a document that explains to authorities why you have left your house. The lockdown that began here in Lombardy now extends to the entire country.
For many Italians, the normal warnings about this virus were simply not enough to change behavior. Denial comes too easily, perhaps. It was more convenient to blame some foreign germ-spreader, or pretend that the news was unreal. Then came a reality check: Last Sunday, Pope Francis gave a benediction not from his normal window at the Vatican but via video, in part to avoid the crowd on St. Peter’s Square but also to send a message. That was the first strong sign to snap out of it.
In contrast, here’s Devin Nunes (and by proxy, the entire goddamned Republican party). The concern isn’t about keeping people healthy and alive, it’s about keeping the money flowing in the economy.
“If you’re healthy, you and your family, it’s a great time to go out and go to a local restaurant, likely you can get in easy. Let’s not hurt the working people in this country…go to your local pub” pic.twitter.com/jXdhOfwe9R
— Acyn Torabi (@Acyn) March 15, 2020
Hey, Devin: if you care so much about the “working people and their wages and tips”, why isn’t your party working to guarantee a living wage? Instead, you demand that they get out, sick or not, and service the people who are still going out to restaurants…where, if the workers are not infected, they will be by all the selfish people carrying the disease who are out there transmitting it.
Can we please not get to the point other countries are reaching, where the dead are kept with the living because no one wants to deal with the bodies?
When his sister died after contracting the novel coronavirus, Luca Franzese thought that things couldn’t get much worse.
Then, for more than 36 hours, the Italian actor and mixed martial arts trainer was trapped at home with Teresa Franzese’s decaying body, unable to find a funeral home that would bury her.
“I have my sister in bed, dead, I don’t know what to do,” Franzese said in a Facebook video over the weekend, pleading for help. “I cannot give her the honor she deserves because the institutions have abandoned me. I contacted everyone, but nobody was able to give me an answer.”
Quick, everyone, get to the Wal-Mart before all the body bags are off the shelves!