Governors weigh reopening
Dr. Deborah Birx, the White House coronavirus response coordinator, said on Sunday that Americans should expect social distancing guidelines to continue for months, but crowded beaches in Southern California over the weekend highlighted the likely challenges as spring turns to summer.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York outlined plans that would allow some “low-risk” businesses upstate to reopen as soon as mid-May.
In other developments:
The pandemic has now killed more than 200,000 people and sickened more than 2.9 million worldwide, according to data collected by The Times. The actual toll is probably much higher, as official tallies have undercounted deaths, largely because of limited testing.
The U.S. government isn’t disclosing which companies receive aid under a troubled $349 billion loan program that was part of a rescue package signed into law last month. That makes a full accounting of the Paycheck Protection Program impossible.
Driven by tourism, Las Vegas has been hit particularly hard by the unemployment crisis caused by the pandemic. One-third of the city’s economy is in the leisure and hospitality industry, and most of those jobs can’t be done from home.
Businesses and schools in New Zealand will start reopening on Tuesday, part of moves in several countries that are beginning to lift restrictions.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson of Britain, who was hospitalized with the virus, returned to work today. Our London bureau chief, Mark Landler, compared Downing Street’s briefings with those of the White House.
The details: We’ve updated our compilation of expert guidance on several subjects, including health, money and travel.
32 days on a ventilator
Jim Bello, 49, an athletic and healthy lawyer, developed a fever in early March after a hike in New Hampshire and later landed in a suburban emergency room, struggling to breathe.
“It’s like they fall off a cliff,” said Dr. Peggy Lai, a critical care doctor at Massachusetts General Hospital. “You see young patients getting sicker and sicker by the day despite everything that you know is good standard of care.”
Related: Antibody tests, which show who has been infected, are not currently reliable enough to guide policy on lockdowns and reopenings, experts say. But they can help model the spread of the virus.
Another angle: Men are more likely than women to die of the virus, so scientists are treating them with something women have more of: female sex hormones.
A pause on President Trump’s briefings
The president did not conduct a Q. and A. with reporters over the weekend, amid Republican concerns that his extended appearances at the White House’s daily coronavirus briefings are hurting him politically.
After suggesting last week that injections of disinfectants into the human body could help fight the virus, Mr. Trump took no questions at Friday’s briefing and later said that the events were no longer worth his time.
Closer look: The Times analyzed every word — all 260,000 of them — that Mr. Trump has spoken about the virus from March 9, when the outbreak began leading to widespread disruptions, through mid-April. Self-congratulation was the most common theme.
If you have 6 minutes, this is worth it
A game that wasn’t about the score
Sopan Deb, a Times writer, grew up in New Jersey with a love for sports that wasn’t shared by his father, an immigrant from India.
Sopan writes: “Like many South Asian parents of his generation living in the United States, his focus was on survival and trying to get to the next day. On behalf of their children, it was on professional and scholastic pursuits. Anything else was a distraction.”
Revisiting the Iran nuclear deal: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is preparing to argue that the U.S. is still a participant in the 2015 agreement, which President Trump has renounced. The move is said to be part of a strategy to pressure the United Nations Security Council to extend an arms embargo or to reimpose tougher sanctions on Iran.
Snapshot: Above, recreating “Salome with the Head of John the Baptist,” a 17th-century painting by Guido Reni. A Facebook group started in Russia for lo-fi parodies of famous paintings now has more than 500,000 members.
Metropolitan Diary: In this week’s column, alterations for a new pair of pants, an exchange at a deli and more reader tales of New York City.
What we’re reading: Grub Street’s testament to the Park Slope Food Co-op in Brooklyn. “More than once in the last month, I have stood in line — gratefully — for an hour plus,” writes the Briefings editor, Andrea Kannapell. “The personal investment in the food supply chain kinda, sorta, maybe offsets the alienation imposed by capitalism, cubed by pandemic.”
Now, a break from the news
We’ve started an email newsletter, At Home, with our recommendations for what to read, cook, watch and do while staying safe at home. Sign up here.
Our international photo desk has editors in three hubs. Last week, the editors most responsible for assigning photography in these regions — Gaia Tripoli in London, me in New York and Mikko Takkunen in Hong Kong — were thinking about ways to show readers what the beginning of Ramadan would look like as the coronavirus crisis continues to transform the way people live.
A couple of weeks ago, we put together a piece on Good Friday, with pictures from our photographers at the Vatican and in countries with strong communities of the world’s estimated 1.3 billion Roman Catholics. Ramadan is observed by about 1.8 billion Muslims across the world, and we were ready for a more ambitious approach. We assigned 21 photographers in 21 cities to document the start of this most unusual Ramadan.
Dan Balilty’s striking photograph of a man praying on a rooftop in Jerusalem during a sandstorm — with the Dome of the Rock in the background — led the essay. We got an intimate look into people’s homes as they celebrated the start of the holy month in Johannesburg, Mumbai and Kuala Lumpur. We saw grand mosques, empty or nearly so, in Brooklyn, New Delhi, Sarajevo, Paris, Dearborn and Bangkok. And we showed people distributing food for iftar in Myanmar, Indonesia and Egypt.
We aimed for geographic, cultural and aesthetic diversity, asking photographers to document what they found in their own communities, from an intimate iftar supper in Jeddah to a solitary prayer on a lake in Kashmir.