Can theme parks help keep Californians safe in California?

One of the problems with making plans is that people are usually involved.

We are pesky beings, aren’t we? Always wanting to do our own thing and not sticking with the script. That makes leadership a challenge, and especially so in times of crisis that leave people fearful, frustrated and, eventually, angry.

So I don’t envy what California Gov. Gavin Newsom faces right now. Without a vaccine or a proven, universal treatment, the best way to fight this pandemic is to keep people from spreading it. But doing that means persuading people to change their ways.

Looking at the data on a per capita basis, California has done better than most states, with case and death rates below the national median since the start of the pandemic. The state’s numbers look even better recently, as case rates surge in the Midwest and some mountain states.

Gov. Newsom and state leadership deserve some credit here. But until this virus is under control, California — like any other state — remains just a super-spreader away from disaster. Perhaps that is why the governor has been so reluctant to allow Disneyland and other theme parks to reopen.

But even though Gov. Newsom leads a “nation-state,” as he has said, he does not lead a nation. He cannot call the California Highway Patrol to close the state’s borders, preventing people from crossing the state line. Given how much worse things are outside of California right now, that’s bad news for the state if more Californians decide to travel, putting them at risk for bringing more of the virus back to California when they return.

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The best thing for California right now is for Californians to stay close to home. Maybe that’s the best play for theme parks to be making right now, as they seek permission to reopen — attractions can actually help prevent the spread of the virus if they help keep people inside the state. Six Flags Magic Mountain made that play in its recent rebuttal to Gov. Newsom’s declaration that the state was in “no hurry” to reopen the parks.

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“Let’s work together to reopen, and to ensure we keep Californians in California in a safe, fun, and outdoor environment,” the Santa Clarita park said.

Managing people is tough. It often feels like herding cats. …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment


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