Lifting Lockdown: Episode 5

Originally posted 16MAY2020

Previously on Lifting Lockdown:

PwrBld’s reopening got attention from the ABC in Philly. Opening a discussion on the economic impact of lockdown (that most on ABC6’s Facebook desperately avoided).

The two-pronged approach used by gyms in Ohio got results and a reopening date.

Tonight, following up on PwrBld and a SECOND gym looking to open in the Philly area as PA admits it never really had a plan for the “green” phase while admitting the virus has peaked. Also, we run around the country to check in with states that ARE opening. Georgia, by the way, is entering its FOURTH week with gyms open.

I was hoping to wait for after 18MAY, but that’s not happening in what looks to be a week for lifting lockdowns.

1.) PA —- PwrBld’s Collin Whitney is making the rounds, as the Philly-area gym gets set to open this Monday. In an interview with CBS Philly, Whitney observes that “I just feel like if a Walmart can be open and there are a 1,000 people in there and all they’ve essentially done is put some tape on the ground, why can’t we have a chance to keep our business alive as well?”

I am going to bang on this drum until it breaks. The best part of watching this has been a ton of people typing VERY ANGRY missives about how OUTRAGED they are at how DIRTY gyms are….from the phone in their day-old-gloved hands. —- Transcend Fitness, a gym in Newtown (about 50 minutes NW of PwrBld if you take the Turnpike), opened earlier today. —- [H/T Branden Kummer] —- As if to demonstrate that something poorly handled can always be handled worse, PA Health Secretary Rachel Levine more or less admitted that they don’t have any sort of criteria for moving from “yellow” to “green.” —- At the same time, the DPH as acknowledged (or, depending on how much credit you give them, admitted) that the virus has peaked in PA and that the rate of infection has been declining over the last 14 days.

A decline in infection rate over 2 weeks, by the way, is part of the WHITE HOUSE criteria from moving between phases. That guidance has been out for weeks, but was barely acknowledged by the same people who now admit they built an entrance for the reopening, but not the exit. —- [H/T Leigh Gower] There is now a movement to require emergency proclamations to need legislative approval to go past 30 days. Can’t imagine why.

2.) States Fights —- In Ohio, gyms are gearing up after finally getting a reopening date after a week or two of lobbying and lawsuits. —- Joe Sullivan posted the guidelines Ohio gyms will be following during the reopening. — [H/T Quintin Meyer] —- Meanwhile, gyms are now open in Wisconsin after the state Supreme Court tossed the stay-at-home order. This also caused individual counties to toss theirs. Among the gyms opening is Limitless Elite Gym in Appleton, about a half hour SE of Green Bay. Co-owners Quintin and Sara Meyer noted to KLUK that “if it would have happened a month prior to when it did, I don’t know if we would have gotten through it.” —- [H/T Donna Marts] —- Meanwhile, Idaho is getting a little more aggressive in reopening. Gyms, hair and nail salons, and dine-in restaraunts went live today as the state entered the second of its four-stage plan. Bars were bumped up to Stage 3, when they were at 4. —- Ian Smith, owner of Atilis Gym in Bellmawr, NJ, is another gym owner looking to open on Monday regardless of state orders. In an interview with FOX News’ Tucker Carlson, Smith says that NJ Gov. Phil Murphy “has presented zero plans and I think my business partner and I have a plan to keep people safe,” that the gyms actions are grounded in “civil disobedience,” and that they “reject the premise of essential versus nonessential businesses.”

Much like Whitney, Smith notes that the argument used against gyms in regards to cleanliness is hand-waved with regard to Walmarts.

On his Facebook, Smith notes that he will be on FOX And Friends at 6:20 AM tomorrow morning on the FOX News Channel. —- [H/T Ryan VanCleave] —- Washington State Governor Jay Inslee has said that he can’t guarantee the state will move into its second phase of reopening on 01JUN. So good luck to gyms in that area. — Finally, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis made an interesting argument in regards to their reopening. Gyms will be able to go live on 18MAY.

I say interesting because of the following excerpt from WTVT, the FOX in Tampa Bay:
“”This is a respiratory virus that tends to attack people who have health problems or are not in good physical condition. So don’t we want people to stay in shape?” DeSantis continued”

This was the argument Friendship Fitness’ Jeff Binek made back in late April, see Lifting Lockdown: Episode 3.

With that, we look forward to Monday, with a growing movement in PA of disregarding Wolf’s plans (now that it’s clear he doesn’t have any), and gearing up for lifting under lockdown.

Good luck to the gyms and other small businesses in the Northeast.

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