Experts had long been warning America that this day would come, and now we are staring down a long, hot, socially-distanced summer.
Sure, there are still some mysteries to be solved when it comes to the novel strain of coronavirus that the world continues to grapple with. There is no cure, nor is there a vaccine readily available. Only a handful of treatment options seem to work at all, and they’ve been limited in their efficacy at that. The only surefire way to beat the virus remains the practice of social distancing, which has been difficult to maintain for a bored and broke American public.
This has led us to now; where a thoroughly predicted second wave of the illness appears poised to sweep through the United States.
After trending downward for six weeks, the U.S. caseload has been growing again for over a week, particularly in the South and West. Some 34,700 new cases were reported nationwide Tuesday, according to the count kept by Johns Hopkins University. The number was higher than any other day except April 9 and the record-setting date of April 24, when 36,400 cases were logged.
While new cases have been declining steadily in early U.S. hot spots such as New York and New Jersey, several other states set single-day case records Tuesday, including Arizona, California, Mississippi, Nevada and Texas. Some of them also broke hospitalization records, as did North Carolina and South Carolina.
Experts are not thrilled.
“The question of how we’re doing as a nation is: We’re not doing so well. How are we doing as a state? Not doing so well,” said Dr. Jeffrey Smith, the county executive in Santa Clara County, California, home to Silicon Valley. Nearly 5,600 people have died of the virus in California, the most populous state.
The news comes as many in the United States begin planning for summer vacations and trips to the beach, none of which are terribly conducive to social distancing.
With the 4th of July holiday right around the corner, Americans may not be feeling so independent after all.
Become an insider!
Sign up for our free email newsletter, and we'll make sure to keep you in the loop.