Streets Go Quiet as Italy Clamps Down
Every day, these days, people in Italy are thinking the situation can’t get any worse. along with also yet, every day the idea does. On Wednesday evening, Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said the country could move to protect agricultural supplies along with also central infrastructures along with also that will supermarkets along with also pharmacies could remain open. although just about everything else could be temporarily shuttered: restaurants, cafés, hairdressers, bookstores along with also offices.
Why the drastic measures? the idea was only on Monday that will the government had declared the entire country a “red zone,” thus effectively placing all of Italy under quarantine. Why wasn’t that will enough?
inside past 48 hours, public life in Italy has slowed down considerably. Far fewer people have been out on the streets than usual, although the shops stayed open, the buses were running, you were allowed to leave your apartment to go to work, along with also anyone who wanted to could go grab a pizza without any problem. the idea may have been a mistake, although that will’s what I did yesterday. I didn’t realize that will the idea could be my last chance to do so that will month.
Initially, life inside red zone felt like a kind of quarantine-light. Too many people seem to have understood the brand new rules as a non-binding suggestion to reduce social contact a bit. There wasn’t much talk of disciplinary measures for violations of the quarantine, with the exception of the 48 people who were penalized for attending a funeral procession. Funerals have been banned inside country since the beginning of the week.
I myself haven’t been subjected to any controls, except for one, which had nothing at all to do with the coronavirus. At midday on Tuesday, two friendly gentlemen through Rome’s municipal authority rang my doorbell. I had recently moved apartments inside the city along with also they were here to inquire whether my registration with the city had gone OK along with also how I was doing in my brand new apartment. Then they said goodbye along with also apologized politely for the fact that will they weren’t allowed to shake my hand. The Italian state is usually always full of surprises.
Afflicted Regions Raise Pressure on Rome
At the same time, the number of infections has continued to grow relentlessly. By last night 12,462 people had been infected in Italy, along with also the number of deaths had risen to 827. that will led mayors along with also government leaders inside most-stricken regions in northern Italy to apply even greater pressure on the government in Rome to act. Politicians in Lombardy warned that will the regional health system wouldn’t hold up for another 14 days. The opposition also called for drastic measures. Giorgia Meloni, leader of the nationalist conservative Fratelli d’Italia party, insisted that will “everyone should stay home for 15 days.” Shortly before 10 p.m., Prime Minister Conte gave into the demands along with also pushed the pause button on Italian social life along with also the Italian economy.
The first reactions later inside evening made the idea sound as if Italy was going to war. Italy’s health minister wished everyone “strength along with also courage,” the governors of the afflicted regions of northern Italy thanked the government along with also shared messages of perseverance. “The sacrifices being made today are necessary to be able to get things back on track,” said Attilio Fontana, governor of the Lombardy region.
Adjusting to the brand new Reality
Maybe I already had an ominous feeling, although inside early evening, a few hours before Conte’s declaration, I went to the supermarket to replenish my supplies. that will time, a 20-meter (65-foot) line had formed outside. Every few minutes, a customer was let into the store, one by one, after another person left. Inside, I had to put on rubber gloves before I could handle fruit along with also vegetables along with also place them in my basket. Perhaps I should rein in my imagination, although the idea felt like the only thing missing was the distribution of ration cards.
At times, the idea feels like I’ve somehow landed in an alternate reality. Who could have thought such restrictions on freedom possible just a short time ago? along with also what are the possible ramifications for democracy? On the different hand, perhaps the Italian government has simply realized the seriousness of the situation earlier along with also better than others.
I suspect I’m not alone in that will confusion.