COVID-19 in NYC
It's been getting very strange outside the past few weeks as more and more people are staying indoors, only popping out to walk their dog or get food. Once bustling places of congregation like Times Square, Union Square Park and pubs are all empty or forced to close. Word on the street is that martial law is only a few weeks away if we don't get ahead of the curve with the spread of the virus.
K.K. and I have been sheltering in place, with the exception of grocery shopping and visiting Erik and Uri. The four of us have all been working from home and eliminated interactions with people outside our circle of four. We're washing our hands a lot and making meals for each other, watching television shows and films we've been meaning to watch for some time.
We were at Erik and Uri's last night and came home via the subway around 01:00AM, being careful not to touch anything and to maintain large gaps between people, which is somewhat easy to do, as the streets, buses, subways are all empty... well, the subways are empty except for hundreds of homeless that are now living on the subways — stretched out on every bench on every carriage of every train. This is not acceptable, and as much of a fan I am of the subway, this is dangerous! The trains will become a breeding ground for the virus and the homeless will spread it when they leave the subway system to forage for food during the day.
The time has come to shut down the NYC subway for the meantime. Keep the buses running so critical persons can get from place to place, but the subways have become dangerous for everyone.
I am a proponent of subways in every major city — they make getting to and from work quicker, easier and more environmentally-friendly than driving or taking a cab; being on their own dedicated pathways ensures that they are not affected by traffic jams, traffic lights and the like. Subways are something that make great metro areas fantastic metro areas; however, for some reason, the New York Subways seem to allow homeless persons to live on the trains — no matter how many police they hire on the MTA, they seem to generally ignore the homeless problem on the subways. Sure, they will pile on average citizens for jumping a turnstile, using the doors at the ends of the carriage to go from one carriage to another, selling churros in the mezzanine of the subway or violating any of the many "rules of the subway" — but with the homeless, the buskers, the beggars, the habitual masturbators who expose themselves to young girls they look the other way. Why?!?
The NYC Subway isn't the cleanest in the world, especially when you compare it to the subways of Kuala Lumpur, Bangkok, Hong Hong and many others... we don't even have safety doors on the platforms!
I don't know why we ave such a hard time policing and maintaining a clean, orderly and polite subway system in New York City — I really don't.
As opposed as I am to police barking illogical orders at people for no reason other than to exert their will on others for a cheap thrill, if there were ever a case for police to use force to remove people from a venue, this is is! The subways need to be clean and safe, doubly so during this outbreak. The NYPD Transit Police can't seem to manage the scourge of homeless when there isn't a pandemic, what makes you think they can handle it today?!? If the MTA can't handle the homeless, let alone disinfect carriages, it's time to close the subway system for now. Hey! At least if they do this, we can fast track all the track and station-work our crumbling subways need.