Popular Facebook Group “#OpenCTNow” Is Fed Up With Quarantine
There are two types of people reading this post: those who want quarantine to continue, and those who want it to end. The latter worries for the economy, aches for normalcy, and may even conspire to expose the pandemic as a hoax. The most vocal of this anti-stay-at-home camp, especially, has found an avenue on which they can drive awareness and honk their restriction-loosening horns.
This avenue is called the #OpenCTNow Facebook Group-- and their mission statement is, as matter-of-fact, as they are disgusted with the fact of the matter:
"#OpenCTNow. The engine of our economy is small businesses and ALL jobs are essential to the people who hold them. By closing small businesses while letting large big box stores remain open, Lamont is enabling the destruction of the middle class. By putting thousands on furlough or unemployment, we are ensuring the stagnation of our states economy. We encourage businesses to open if they choose. We encourage people to go back to work, while taking the precautions that they deem necessary. Our freedoms and ability to make a livelihood are non-negotiable."
However, the group's membership-- which totals 6,093, to be exact-- isn't only upset with the economy. Here are a few select Facebook posts from members of #OpenCTNow:
A member's evident frustration with the conventions of Quarantine:
I honestly can't stand to see one more person wearing a mask. Please let's get back to human interaction.
Regarding a member's trip to Dick's Sporting Goods:
I have a question. I think I’m reasonably intelligent, well read, and well spoken. So please forgive the ignorance, but what the HELL is a “non-essential” business? Can anybody truthfully answer that? I view EVERY business as essential. It certainly is to the owners and people who work there to pay their bills and feed their families.
Regarding a member's plans for an in-person Memorial Day Tribute:
They’ve cancelled parades and covered our mouths, but we need to stand strong for what we believe in. More importantly, other people need to see us do it because many are afraid. 9 AM at Torrington City Hall. Family-friendly and mask tolerant. Hope to see you there.
Regarding a member's trip to Bass Pro Shops in Bridgeport:
Very happy to see a store with no social distancing, no arrows, masks if you choose and people actually laughing, talking and having an awesome shopping experience...
Evidently, the outrage speaks volumes through these peoples' everyday experiences and sentiments. And there's plenty more where that came from: over the past 30 days, the group has amassed more than 5,000 posts alone, not including comments or the initial posts since it's recent conception on April 15th.
With the group's sprawling scroll of posts that seem to echo in agreement, it's easy to assume this is how all of Connecticut truly feels. But this is simply not the case, especially on the Connecticut subreddit.
Here's what a few members have to say in response to the #OpenCTNow FB group:
If you absolutely want to lose your faith in humanity, you should come join the group it is... disheartening.
I've been trolling this group for weeks and attempting to fact check some of their information. 95% of the time they're not open to reason but 5% of the time some of them are. Just never comment on anything with a real profile because they are crazy and will go after you!
blind to the facts:
If the news out of Brazil and the South America wasn't so bad, I wouldn't disagree with them as much. But other countries are now turning cold and its Fall and the virus is just taking hold there. Even china is shutting down cities again.
not fit for survival:
Is it time for the Darwin awards all ready?
Although probably not worthy or intelligent takes from #OpenCTNow's perspective, this Reddit thread is a microcosm of valid opinions from those who don't, in fact, want CT to reopen. Inevitably, as this pandemic runs its natural course, so too will the bickering and its symptomatic disagreements on how the country should proceed.
Collectively, however, whether eating inside your favorite restaurant can wait or can't come soon enough, we can all hope the tension doesn't extend beyond the screens of our devices:
video credit: Deja Johnson
But it does.
This, for all of us, is a disheartening video. People want to shop, people want to stay safe-- and neither was accomplished in this altercation at a local Walmart. To cross our fingers for a compromise under which we can all have our cake and eat it too, free of Covid, conspiracy, conflict, and conference calls, for now, is all we can do.