And yet, uncanny though it might be, the imagery of an actual pandemic is, truth be told, considerably less melodramatic than the cinematic version. Often, when we call something “unimaginable,” what we really mean is more like “too oft imagined.” We actually have been here before, in every pandemic movie, in that Will Smith one with the zombies, for instance—and, in the zombie movie, the people are slavering in the streets. In the real one, the streets are merely empty.
As of Sept. 18, only 10% of Manhattan office workers had returned to their buildings, the Wall Street Journal reported late last month.
De Blasio confirmed that City Hall had indeed been considering bringing back more of its workforce, but new developments were put on hold due to the recent COVID clusters in Brooklyn and Queens.
The maps were drafted in consultation with health experts including former city health commissioner and Centers for Disease Control director Dr. Tom Frieden, Dr. Noam Ross of EcoHealth Alliance, and Dr. Michael Osterholm of the University of Minnesota.
Indeed, the governor also announced that the state would take over supervision of enforcement of mask and social-distancing rules in the hot spot clusters, presumably putting the State Police in charge of New York City Police Department officers.
That deadline is a day earlier than Mayor Bill de Blasio had set — and equally irrelevant for the hundreds of Jewish schools in the areas, most of which are closed right now because of the Sukkot holiday.
Cuomo also announced that he would take over efforts to enforce social distancing and mask mandates in New York City areas with rising cases, many of which are home to significant Orthodox populations.
After initially leading the nation in positive coronavirus tests, New York City was able to get the virus under control earlier this year through strong messaging on the importance of social distancing and the widespread closures of businesses. But in recent weeks, city officials and residents had been watching the numbers tick back up, particularly in Orthodox Jewish areas.
Over the past two weeks, the number of new cases of the virus has been rising in pockets of the city, predominantly in neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens that are home to the city’s large Orthodox Jewish population.
She also captured endorsements from Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and two Democratic presidential candidates, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders. Ms. Cabán thanked the Working Families Party and Democratic Socialists of America. The crowd chanted, “Black Lives Matter,” “People-powered justice,” and “No new jails.”
“I ran because for too long too many communities in Queens haven’t had a fair shot in the criminal justice system,” Ms. Cabán said.