More than a third of the planet’s population is now under some form of lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many agree that controlling the spread of the highly contagious virus should be the priority, but not all agree.
In the United States, groups of Americans are taking to the streets to protest against lockdown measures, much to the bewilderment of the rest of the world.
Here’s why they’re protesting.
1. They believe the lockdowns infringe on their freedom
Some say that these measures infringe on their right to freedom. Many are claiming that social distancing measures violate freedom of religion, as mass gatherings have been prohibited. In some cities, protesters came to demonstrations with guns, as gun rights groups are some of the most active organizers of these protests.
2. They believe that the damage on the economy would be worse than the loss of life
Most of the protesters believe that the lockdown measures are overreactions, and that restricting businesses could do more damage to citizens, causing long-term damage to the economy. Many of them have referenced President Trump, saying that “the cure cannot be worse than the disease.” Some groups also want to redefine “essential” businesses.
According to the BBC, the total number of unemployment claims in the US have reached over 22 million.
2. They don’t believe that COVID-19 is as big a problem as everyone says it is
Most of the demonstrators in these protests were mask-free, and many ignored social distancing recommendations.
Though some of the protests were quite small, attracting just a few dozen protesters, some demonstrations have had crowds of thousands. The biggest protest so far was held in Michigan on April 15. Over 3,000 people were in attendance.
3. They just don’t like the inconvenience of sheltering in place
We have no words.
What does the rest of America think?
We have to note that these protesters represent the minority of Americans.
According to a recent poll, over 80% of US residents approve of a national stay-at-home order. A Pew Research survey found that 66% of Americans are concerned that restrictions will be lifted too soon. The survey also found that most Americans believe that the worst is yet to come.
What do you think of these anti-lockdown protests in the US?