On June 15, 2021, California will largely reopen—fifteen months after Governor Gavin Newsom shut down most businesses and institutions, also instructing citizens to stay at home, in an attempt to slow spread of SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus 2)/COVID-19. This sidewalk sentiment seems oh-so appropriate for near-normalcy returning. Granted, inflation rises, the housing market is insanely competitive, supply shortages increase cost for goods like lumber, and many reopening businesses struggle to hire enough employees—among other oddities. So normal isn’t nearly enough.
Newsom will free Californians four days before the traditionally celebrated Freedom Day/Emancipation Day—also known as Juneteenth. How ironic—or arrogantly preemptive—is that? But he is not relinquishing the emergency powers used to close down the state. How will that decision affect his chances during the special recall election that could, in a few months, remove him as governor? Surely some people will respect his maintaining authority, while others will say that he oversteps his gubernatorial powers. We’ll see soon enough.
Looking to where we all go next, the Featured Image expresses timely sentiment, but the moment is nearly a year old. I used iPhone XS to capture the sidewalk art on July 12, 2020 at the corner of Georgia and Meade in San Diego’s University Heights community. Vitals: f/1.8, ISO 25, 1/4673 sec, 26mm (film equivalent); 9:46 a.m. PDT.
In mid-March last year, Newsom chose for the state’s 39.5 million people. Finally free, what will we choose for ourselves, following a year of lockdown and lots of time for frustration and contemplation? You tell me.