Last night at the 7pm neighborhood applause and pot banging, New Yorkers were louder and stayed out longer than we have in a while. That’s because after five weeks of lockdown, new hospitalizations and lives lost are down, and we are making real progress.
The moment shifted me out of a funk I’ve been in for several days. Last week I was discouraged by the realization that after all this, we are still looking at months before we can safely get back to life. Then, my mood darkened when I saw that people in less densely populated parts of the country were protesting to re-open.
Here’s the thing. By sacrificing in our close quarters, New Yorkers (along with Californians and Washingtonians and people from Louisiana) delayed the curve. We’ve given other regions precious time to figure out how to respond, which is saving lives. And we flattened the curve. Instead of the terrifying numbers that were projected, our intervention has reduced the number (for now) of people who are sick, and have passed, to a fraction of the worst case. We’ve reduced the spread to other regions by reducing local cases.
I wish people would say thank you. More importantly, I wish people would slow down and take inspiration from the success. It’s a classic lesson in leadership that when you focus on what you can influence, you make progress. With that realization, we can all shift from fear and uncertainty to confidence that together, we can do great things.
We’ll get there everyone. Please #ThankNYC, and keep up the good work.