A statewide shelter-in-place order has been issued by Governor Newsom. “All individuals living in the State of California are currently ordered to stay home or at their place of residence, except for permitted work, local shopping or other permitted errands, or as otherwise authorized.” Violation of the order can result in a misdemeanor with up to $1,000 in fines or six months imprisonment.
Before the order goes into effect, people rush to the stores to horde cherished and needed items. Price gouging is illegal under the emergency declaration but this doesn’t mean price increases don’t happen. Apocalypse grease the wheels of commerce. With the fervent greed comes the expected loss of reason and focus. Toilet paper becomes a scarce commodity but paper towels sell at their normal rate. Hand sanitizers sell out of stock while hand soap stays on the shelves. Pills and powders that promise to increase immunity are more popular than ever. Fresh fruit waits nearby, wondering if people notice the powders and pills are refined and processed versions of what the fruit offers fresh. Canned foods fly off the shelves. Dried beans and fresh vegetables are no more desired than before. People are poised for panic, and the media eggs it on.
In California, there have 19 deaths and 1,067 cases reported.