As the United States seems eager to get companies and businesses up and running again amid the coronavirus pandemic, Memorial Day Weekend has drawn large crowds that are raising concern among officials. The patriotic holiday is the first major holiday to be celebrated since COVID-19 ripped through the U.S. in mid-March, shutting down thousands of businesses and causing festivals and sporting events to postpone or cancel altogether. But since people are back to traveling and ready to celebrate with family and friends, health professionals are sending out warnings to citizens.
"We really want to be clear all the time that social distancing is absolutely critical," Dr. Deborah Birx, coordinator of the White House coronavirus task force said on ABC's This Week according to PBS. "And if you can't social distance and you're outside, you must wear a mask." Birx further expressed she was "very concerned" over the weekend's gathering of large crowds. Officials are concerned that there will be a resurgence of the virus that's already killed nearly 100,000 people in the U.S.
There's been a divide among U.S. citizens on whether the nation should reopen or not. However, as each state moves toward going back to normal, the opinions vary. According to Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, the decision to reopen and keep safe is not political, it's a matter of facts. "This is not about politics. This is not about whether you are liberal or conservative, left or right, Republican or Democrat," he said on NBC's Meet the Press. "It's been very clear what the studies have shown: You wear the mask not to protect yourself so much as to protect others."
A video has gone viral showing a large crowd of hundreds of people gathered in the Lake of the Ozarks. Again, there have been divided opinions on what was filmed. Some feel that people should be able to gather because the majority of who participated looked to be younger in age, while others feel they're posing a threat not only to themselves but others.
In Florida, it seems as though the beaches are more crowded than they ever have been, considering families have been cooped up inside for the last few months in efforts to slow the spread. However, patrol cars have been out and about making sure people are social distancing appropriately, keeping some orderly fashion to the popular beaches.