Gov. Kate Brown has invoked her emergency powers to threaten criminal sanctions against those who gather in groups larger than six in private homes between Nov. 18 and Dec. 2. The measure effectively cancels Thanksgiving. But Black Friday is still a go: Brick-and-mortar retail shops can remain open throughout the freeze, so long as they cap capacity at 75%. Health experts and economists who spoke to WW worry that might not be limited enough, especially since neighboring states have capped retail capacity at 25% and Oregon has no sales tax. Here's what our readers had to say:
@bubblesandmochi via Twitter: "I can't gather with my family to have Thanksgiving dinner, but I can still enjoy Thanksgiving at the mall with a whole bunch of strangers breathing stale air."
@septa_lemore via Twitter: "You're right, they should both be canceled."
Erika Peterson via Facebook: "I work in a store and I've wondered this too. I'd sure rather just have the day off."
Shirley Hutchinson Reed via Facebook: "COVID safety rules will apply on Black Friday. Also, stores have gotten smart enough to spread the sales out all month. We shopped in an almost empty mall and got presents at amazing prices. Even better would be to shop the sales online."
Travis Abbott via Facebook: "Well, I think the main reason is, people aren't eating and drinking without masks (or at least they're not supposed to be) at malls…"
Eddie Blake via Facebook: "Yeahhhhh, I would head out and take a look at what the malls are doing. You're going to be shocked."
Tyler Burnett via Facebook: "We must keep spending to please our corporate overlords. C'mon, their CEO is starving right now! Think of those poor executives working from home while retail workers fight Karens and COVID."
Big Biscuit via wweek.com: "It's just random rules to show that [Brown] is doing something until vaccines reach critical mass. Give some specifics on restaurant outbreaks. How about at grocery stores? We don't know because we lost the battle with contact tracing."
K. Kofler via wweek.com: "It sucks that we need to have criminal penalties in order to get people to get on board with basic science and help protect each other's lives until the vaccine is publicly available. Unfortunately, it is in fact necessary. Case in point: I travel for work and don't have the choice of staying home. About three nights a week I have to stay in a hotel. As I left my hotel this morning in Roseburg, Oregon, I looked across the street to the local CrossFit, which was open in violation of the governor's orders and totally packed with heavily breathing bodies, which were not wearing masks."
@shannon_k_pdx via Twitter: "Ughhh…I hate this. Please stay home. You can order everything online."
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