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Social Distancing and Unintended Consequences

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posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 09:48 PM
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They always seem to show up, don't they?

Yesterday, the state of Alabama went on lockdown, effective at 5:00 PM today (about 4 hours ago). In the lockdown, there are a lot of exceptions that allow for almost any travel if one wishes to: food (stop by a grocery store and buy a loaf of bread), construction materials, visiting with family, even some religious exceptions (although I still consider any religious restriction unconstitutional). One can even visit friends if it is to help perform some task that they are unable to do.

So far so good, right?

But then there's another clause: all store occupancy is reduced by 50% and all retail locations that are open are to have a monitor outside to ensure the occupancy is not exceeded. Does that sound reasonable? Maybe it does, but here's what I experienced today.

I went to my local Home Depot to pick up some hardware for some stuff that needs repair. Nothing major... some nails, screws, and a few lag bolts, maybe a new extension cord. Something to do while I am waiting this idiocy out. So I pull up like I always do in front of the contractor's entrance, get out with my cane and hobble up to the door where some trucks are loading. A young girl wearing a Home Depot apron asks if I am planning on coming inside... well, yeah, duh. Oh, but this door is now exit only and I have to go inside all the way on the other end of the parking lot. So I walk back to the car and look across the lot to see a temporary awning and a line of customers waiting to enter the store. Then I remembered the clause about occupancy. Oh, great... look, after all the heart issues, I can't stand up for an extended period of time... just can't happen; I'll literally fall to the ground. So I drove off without my hardware.

Now, as it turns out, they have a curbside delivery service I can use... that's not what I am concerned about. What I am concerned about is what this new requirement is doing: that was a line of people crowded together outside the store, certainly not with 6 feet of separation, standing there together for an extended time to wait to get inside the store where they can stay 6 feet apart. Many, I am sure, were there to pick up a few small things like I was; I could have been in and out in 15 minutes. But now, thanks to the concern over social distancing, I would have to spend an hour or better (best I could tell based on how fast the line was moving) violating all of the social distancing recommendations just so I could be assured of not violating them for 15 minutes.

In addition, someone who is disabled like me can no longer reasonably enter the store. There are half as many operable handicap parking spots now, because the other half, while still there, are on the other side of the parking lot which negates any benefit. So this is discrimination against the disabled.

Not the smartest move I have ever seen, to say the least.

Now consider that while driving, I noticed that several smaller stores had closed up. That's when I realized that they couldn't afford to stay open, because doing so means hiring another person to act as "bouncer." That's not a big deal if a store has 50 employees, but if a store has, say, two employees? Now they have to increase their payroll by 50%! No wonder they closed their doors! So this new regulation is putting even more people out of business, and those who would normally be shopping there are forced to go to the major chains, which now have a lack of disabled considerations and long lines that violate social distancing recommendations, making them even worse!

Another unintended consequence, if one wishes to read the exact text linked above, is that anyone who tests positive for the WuFlu is required to stay at home with no exceptions other than emergency medical care for 14 days. That's right; get a positive on a test, and you are immediately a prisoner in your own home. Out of food? Too damn bad, stay at home! Some kid throws a baseball through a window? Sorry, Charlie, just live with the draft while you're recovering. House burns down? Well, you can either burn with it or you can get a ticket for violating your Shelter in Place Order. Now, under these restrictions, would anyone actually want to get a test? I know I will fight it tooth and nail! I don't think I have the WuFlu, but what if the test gives a false positive or I actually have it asymptomatically? I'm screwed! So there won't be many tests in Alabama, at least not voluntary, and we won't know if the WuFlu is widespread or not.

That is actually tying the hands of the medical researchers who are studying the virus to try and get a handle on it, while endangering those who are already sick.

I thought it would be an interesting discussion to have people look at their state's restrictions and see if they can see any more unintended consequences.. ideas that might sound good at first, but put into practice will actually endanger more people.

TheRedneck



+3 more 
posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 09:58 PM
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Arent you glad you don't live in China, where they drag people out of their homes that test positive, before throwing them into a box on a truck, and weld the rest of your family into their apartment? You lucky duck!


+1 more 
posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:00 PM
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Yeah, "unintended" fear mongering EVERYTIME another case is reported in our state leads to the stores being packed full of people who don't have any intention of following the social distancing rules rushing the shelves and cleaning them out to get what they can for themselves and leaving them empty. This aint a big town you can read these people's posts on Facebook and see what giant hypocrites they are. Which IS the reason why I barely go out to begin with. These people aren't worth my time or friendship. This social distancing thing aint hard when you've been doing it for a good portion of your life. Thankfully I can still go out and take a drive when the walls do start closing in, and if they try to take away what is a once a week drive...I'm probably going to go to jail. I'm sick of hearing about a virus that's no more dangerous than the flu. I'm also sick of hypocritical humans and their BS.



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:02 PM
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My parents are in the same boat. My mom has had both her knees replaced and had part of her lumbar region fused. She has arthritis. She doesn't do long jags of standing. Dad has had both hips replaced and has congestive heart failure.

Mom isn't letting dad go anywhere these days except to drive down and get the mail each day.

So she's having to remember to do curbside for everything because she can't wait in those lines.

And then once you do get inside the store - You can't social distance with the way the aisles are set up anyhow. There's no way two people can negotiate an average aisle and stay 6 ft apart, and one person can't wait on another to finish in an aisle without clogging a center lane for everyone else.



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:08 PM
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a reply to: BoscoMoney


This social distancing thing aint hard when you've been doing it for a good portion of your life.

Yeah, I was a hermit back when hermits weren't cool, myself.

TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:13 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

You have some good points there, hiring an extra person to watch the door is not feasable. Only the big chains will survive. Is the intent to put the little businesses out of business and force us to go to only large chains that the government can control easily? I like creating a conspiracy. Making the people dependent on the government is a government tactic to control the people.



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:14 PM
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a reply to: ketsuko


And then once you do get inside the store - You can't social distance with the way the aisles are set up anyhow. There's no way two people can negotiate an average aisle and stay 6 ft apart, and one person can't wait on another to finish in an aisle without clogging a center lane for everyone else.

Oh, that's a whole 'nother issue in itself! To maintain 6 feet between others, assuming each person takes up 2 feet of space, that means aisle widths would have to increase from about 4 feet (if you're lucky) to 10 feet! That's two and a half times the width, and it still doesn't allow for the slowpoke that has to spend 45 minutes examining every single box of mac&cheese on the shelf before choosing to not buy any.

Our infrastructure is simply not set up for what our leaders now want to make mandatory. Our lives are not set up for what our leaders want to make mandatory. So far, everyone I have talked to here is very upset with the lockdown... and I live in the state known for a high population of wild and crazy rednecks! This could end up very badly.

TheRedneck



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:14 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

There's definitely a plethora of unintended consequences, although I'd say the people crowding up together is just an unintemded consequence of idiocy. The handicapped situation though - everyone is trying to adjust, and these store managers and workers I'm sure have their heads spinning right now.

I see lots of adjustments being made by people and businesses, but those unintended consequences are going to keep cropping up - hopefully people keep on adapting.

Where I am, getting deliveries or curbside pickups of anything I want has been easy, but we may have it better than most in the suburbs of Chicago.



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:16 PM
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man all this high strung hyperbole makes you look so damn bad.
all these gotchas are just so contrary and contrived!
burn down with your house? do you really, honestly think that's the intention?
do you genuinely think there's no way to work out individual accomodations for people's needs?

these orders are generalities designed to minimise spread, in an ad hoc setting where none of us have done this before.
but no, of course, MUH FREEDUM is so much more important than any sort of group effort, heaven forfend that the way of life you've led these past decades should be put out one iota. constitution.



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:20 PM
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originally posted by: visitedbythem
Arent you glad you don't live in China, where they drag people out of their homes that test positive, before throwing them into a box on a truck, and weld the rest of your family into their apartment? You lucky duck!



Did they actually do that in China? Please provide a credible supportive link.

Were you also aware that China is in the process of lifting the restrictions?

Hubei lifts restrictions as China reports no new domestic COVID-19 cases - CNA

Have quick look at the current Chinese figures regarding the spread, and the deaths due to COVID-19, in comparison to the US figures.

The deaths due to the virus and the number of infections in the US continue to skyrocket. China has brought them almost to a stop. In terms of actual and practical response, China fares better than the US, which is now the absolute worst on the planet for the spread of the virus.

edit on 4/4/2020 by chr0naut because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:30 PM
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The absolute mind boggling stupidity in the ways some businesses are handling this thing is getting ridiculous.

Walmart is doing similar by closing off an entrance, therby also eliminating half their handicap spots.

Ive seen gas stations that have a banquet table in front of the counter that you have to reach over to hand your virus covered cash to the cashier. Ive seen 2 foot wide plexiglass screens hanging by string over the counter.

My absolute favorite is burger king. The drive through teller opens the window, without a mask, or gloves, and holds out a pan for you to put your virus covered cash or card in. Which they then pick up and process.
Then stick the pan back out for you to get your card.

Then they stick out a bigger pan with your bag of yummy crappy food in. Through an open window, 3 feet from you while they have no mask or gloves.

I gotta figure burger king has got to have the biggest waste of a dropout from emt school safety guy any company has ever been able to find.

Ive begun shopping and spending money at places that have the least corona related changes to their business.



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:37 PM
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originally posted by: chr0naut

originally posted by: visitedbythem
Arent you glad you don't live in China, where they drag people out of their homes that test positive, before throwing them into a box on a truck, and weld the rest of your family into their apartment? You lucky duck!



Did they actually do that in China? Please provide a credible supportive link.

Were you also aware that China is in the process of lifting the restrictions?

Hubei lifts restrictions as China reports no new domestic COVID-19 cases - CNA

Have quick look at the current Chinese figures regarding the spread, and the deaths due to COVID-19, in comparison to the US figures.

The deaths due to the virus and the number of infections in the US continue to skyrocket. China has brought them almost to a stop. In terms of actual and practical response, China fares better than the US, which is now the absolute worst on the planet for the spread of the virus.


Im surprised you havnt see the clips of families welded into their homes, and people being dragged through the streets and put in a box on a truck. Where have you been?



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:37 PM
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a reply to: TheRedneck

This may not be what you were expecting, but I learned of a very sad situation today. One young man (that serves with my nephew) and his brothers are now not only grieving their mother, but because of "social distancing" and "self-isolating" instructions they followed, she died alone and afraid. She asked for someone to stay with her, but because one has kids and the other works with the public, they did not want to expose her to anything. They did not even see her for her birthday last month although she asked them to come "just this once". They told her it was for her own good.

They found out she was sick Thursday morning. Sometime Friday she passed away in her home. She was found by a neighbor.

They thought they were doing the right thing. They thought that they could make up for it next month on Mother's Day. They thought they were protecting her, and now they feel they abandoned her. I'll bet she felt abandoned too.

My birthday's next week. My kids are "social distancing" and insisting that I "self-isolate" also... for "my own good." I'm not alone of course. I have my husband. I wasn't expecting anything of my birthday anyway, but this sure puts an extra damper on it!



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:38 PM
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Up here in Canada, particularly Ontario where I am. We have been practicing social distancing for the past 3 weeks. Just within the last 3/4 days there has been laws passed to enforce social distancing,
Response by government.
www.ontario.ca...

I experience line ups outside grocery stores, pharmacies, Beer Stores, pretty much any public establishments that are open, because they limit the amount of people inside. All non essential businesses are closed, so the malls have been closed for weeks because you are not going shopping for clothes. All parks, gyms..closed. Anything that you can imagine that it not essential is...closed.
I am not afraid to say I`m scared at home with my kids and wife, not able to visit family or friends, Schools have been shut down for weeks now. Things are getting edgy here as everyone is getting on each others nerves.
I had a neighbor call the cops on us today because my old lady was arguing with my 8 yr. old.
Just think of the potential of this. We are not designed to be confined.
Anger is going to spill into the streets if this goes on too long.
Mark my words!



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:38 PM
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a reply to: continuousThunder


MUH FREEDUM is so much more important than any sort of group effort


Yes.

Welcome to the US of A.



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:40 PM
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originally posted by: TheRedneck
They always seem to show up, don't they?



[quote]I went to my local Home Depot to pick up some hardware for some stuff that needs repair. Nothing major... some nails, screws, and a few lag bolts, maybe a new extension cord. Something to do while I am waiting this idiocy out.

So you consider these items to be essential??


What I am concerned about is what this new requirement is doing: that was a line of people crowded together outside the store, certainly not with 6 feet of separation, standing there together for an extended time to wait to get inside the store where they can stay 6 feet apart. Many, I am sure, were there to pick up a few small things like I was; I could have been in and out in 15 minutes. But now, thanks to the concern over social distancing, I would have to spend an hour or better (best I could tell based on how fast the line was moving) violating all of the social distancing recommendations just so I could be assured of not violating them for 15 minutes.


It's not the store's fault that these people weren't practicing "social distancing".


In addition, someone who is disabled like me can no longer reasonably enter the store. There are half as many operable handicap parking spots now, because the other half, while still there, are on the other side of the parking lot which negates any benefit. So this is discrimination against the disabled.


For this I do apologize.



[quoteTheRedneck


Speaking as one of those employees from one of those "essential services", I whole heartedly agree with all that you encountered. It goes along with how a business has to, in the wintertime, make sure that the sidewalk isn't icy, to avoid a lawsuit.

People need to really evaluate what's "essential" and what's not. And getting a few screws or bolts is NOT essential. Neither is paint, bird seed or "just looking around".



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:42 PM
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Bernie probably has nothing but praise for all this, but we all know the man loves a good bread line. As far as he's concerned, the economy has likely never looked better. /sarcasm



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:43 PM
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a reply to: Boadicea
My condolences that is very sad.



posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:44 PM
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originally posted by: TheRedneck
a reply to: ketsuko


And then once you do get inside the store - You can't social distance with the way the aisles are set up anyhow. There's no way two people can negotiate an average aisle and stay 6 ft apart, and one person can't wait on another to finish in an aisle without clogging a center lane for everyone else.

Oh, that's a whole 'nother issue in itself! To maintain 6 feet between others, assuming each person takes up 2 feet of space, that means aisle widths would have to increase from about 4 feet (if you're lucky) to 10 feet! That's two and a half times the width, and it still doesn't allow for the slowpoke that has to spend 45 minutes examining every single box of mac&cheese on the shelf before choosing to not buy any.

Our infrastructure is simply not set up for what our leaders now want to make mandatory. Our lives are not set up for what our leaders want to make mandatory. So far, everyone I have talked to here is very upset with the lockdown... and I live in the state known for a high population of wild and crazy rednecks! This could end up very badly.

TheRedneck


Floors are marked everywhere, everyplace. 6' distance now


+10 more 
posted on Apr, 4 2020 @ 10:45 PM
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a reply to: edaced4

And who are you to decide what is or is not "essential" to a person?

One person's non-essential goods may be lifesavers in the proper context when that puttering around project reduces stress that might otherwise get vented in the form of domestic violence or drinking or even a suicide.

You don't know other people or their circumstances to know what is or is not essential to them or their needs. A person's mental health is pretty damn essential I'd say.



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