Good Riddance 2020
Now that 2021 has been ushered in with shelter-in-place lockdowns and mandatory curfews, many Americans find themselves recovering from their speak-easy-like celebrations. 2020 will be remembered as the year of firsts. We have lived through the worst global pandemic in a century and one of the harshest economic downturns since the Great Depression.
While more than 83 million worldwide confirmed cases of COVID-19 has claimed 1.8 million lives, many of us are trying to find silver linings in the future. The resulting lockdowns that our esteemed politicians instituted to control the spread of the virus has resulted in unprecedented unemployment at time when our economy was performing at its peak.
2020 saw wide spread civil unrest ushered in by the protests of the George Floyd death at the hands of Minneapolis police. This unrest spread throughout major cities across the country, only adding more distress to many small businesses. As a result, the country has seen new all-time crime records being set.
Plight Of Small Businesses
The National Restaurant Association (NRA) sent a warning letter to Congress addressing the plight of more than 100,000 restaurants across the country due to the fallout of mandatory lockdowns and imposed regulations forced upon these small business owners. According to the letter, 87% of full-service restaurants report an average drop of 36% in overall sales. For an industry that only generates an average of 5%-6% profit margins, these declines are unsustainable. Even more unsettling, 83% of these restaurant owners are expecting sales to be even worse over the next three months.
What was supposed to be a 15-day mandatory shelter-in-place recommendation by the White House Pandemic Task Force, has resulted into an unprecedented series of re-occurring lockdowns orders by mayors and governors across the country. So much for being the land of the of free. While these recommendations were intended to stop the spread of the virus and what ended up being false predictions of 2 million American fatalities, we now are starting to see the real toll whether it be record unemployment, massive spikes in suicides rates, drug overdoses and substance abuse, increased demand for food banks and other charitable organizations, and surge in domestic violence. While our civil liberties have been challenged by these lockdown orders they have also hamstrung many small businesses. It only adds insult to injury when politician after politician has been caught violating their own lock down orders.
Looking To The Future
Normally as soon as we wake up and the New Year’s festivities begin to wear off, most Americans were focused on their personal resolutions. This year however, Americans are looking forward to so many things that we have taken for granted, such as dining inside restaurants, going to concerts and sporting events, having our children attend school, working in an office and idle water cooler chit-chat, or not being forced to wear masks, watching movies in theaters, visiting theme parks, going on cruises, the re-opening of Broadway and museums, or even the summer Olympics, not to mention the continued legalization of medical and recreational cannabis.
Let freedom reign and good riddance 2020. Bring on 2021!
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