Michael Probst/Associated Press
German Chancellor Angela Merkel (Angela Merkel) announced a limited lock-in measure to stop the exponential increase in coronavirus cases, which is currently doubling every 7 days.
After long-term negotiations with the governors of 16 German states, Merkel has been urging the public to reduce social activities for several weeks and persuaded the governor to close bars, restaurants, cafes, gyms, swimming pools, theaters, cinemas and concert venues as their best select.
She warned on Wednesday: “We only need to quadruple the number of infections and the health system is complete.”
The lock will take effect on Monday and will last until the end of November. Merkel insists that schools and daycare facilities should be kept open for as long as possible, which clearly shows that education should take priority over recreational activities. She also announced that companies that were forced to close will receive government subsidies to partially cover their losses.
Despite the economic assistance provided, the blockade will deal a heavy blow to the economy. The German hotel industry has protested the earlier restrictions imposed in October. However, because the infection rate is particularly high among people between 20 and 40 years old, epidemiologists worry that this infection will spread to Germany’s huge elderly population.
This is why politicians keep telling party people to stay at home and avoid going to bars, clubs and restaurants.
Berlin’s nightlife has always been synonymous with hedonism and freedom-from the coke dance performances in the 1920s to the large-scale technical parties in abandoned buildings in the early 1990s, the situation in Berlin has been unsatisfactory. Bars and clubs are open all day, and the “night” can easily last for 48 hours.
However, as Berlin has become an official coronavirus hotspot, the mayor of Berlin stated that “it is not time for gatherings” and announced last month that it will be closed for more than 70 years. Now, less than a week before the bar will be forced to close completely, drinkers are taking full advantage of the freedom that the city usually offers.
One of them is Nora Graf, who sits with friends outside a famous institution in the Kreuzberg area, caring for whiskey to keep the night air cool. She said it was not safe to sit inside. Graf said: “You just have to look around and you can find that many trash cans don’t seem to notice that the virus is taking revenge.” “They should adapt to their behavior.”
Graf, a 38-year-old architect, said she didn’t want to be locked, but said it made sense to limit the opening hours of bars. For her, it didn’t make much difference. Late night is a distant memory. “The nightlife is only 11pm, I would say it is very family friendly!” she said.
But this is not friendly to businesses. Roberto Manteuffel, founder and bar owner of the Berlin Bar Hall, said: “As a bar owner, our business hours are night. This is a nightmare for all of us.”
Mantefil said the forced closure would damage the city’s tax base, but it would not do anything to stop the infection, because revellers would only take their parties home. He said that bar owners can at least keep a record of who is present, which is easier to track contacts than private parties.
“Politicians can’t say: young people are no longer young!” Mantfield argued. “Of course, all of us need to live with the virus, but at the same time, no matter how old we are, we can’t stop being human.”
For Angela Merkel, this is what a person means. She has repeatedly called on people attending the party to consider others. Just last month, Merkel said: “Take some time to think about the most important things. Is this healthy for your family, your grandparents?”
In order to narrow the generation gap, Merkel added: “After Corona, going out and gatherings will still exist. Now, this is the basis for being considerate and showing unity.”
Compared with a recent poster campaign, Merkel’s tone was polite, which used the hands of a masked grandmother to give the middle finger to those who violated the rules and those who attended the party. After the complaint, the poster was removed.
However, both of these messages echoed a German saying: “Ich werde nicht alt”, which means “I can’t be late” at a party. Literally, it means “I will not grow old” – That is Merkel and the governors of the German states tried to prevent this.