Perspectives: Thanksgiving Gatherings and Coronavirus Restrictions

Headline Roundup November 24th, 2020

Amid the surge of COVID-19 coronavirus cases this fall, public health officials are urging Americans to avoid gathering in large groups during Thanksgiving and the rest of the holiday season. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended against traveling for Thanksgiving this year, while several states including California, Oregon, New Jersey and Iowa placed restrictions on the number of people or households that can gather. Some argue that the holiday should be "canceled" this year for the health and safety of loved ones; others argue that Thanksgiving's connections to American culture and history make celebrating it with loved ones necessary.

Outlets across the political spectrum provided guides for having safe Thanksgiving gatherings. Voices from left- and center-rated outlets tended to focus on the surge in coronavirus cases, the increase in travel ahead of the holiday, while some voices from the right framed the holiday restrictions as a "war on Thanksgiving" and advocated for its celebration.

Perspectives: Thanksgiving Gatherings and Coronavirus Restrictions

From the Center

With over a million new Covid-19 cases nationwide in the past week, according to Johns Hopkins University, public health officials are cautioning people not to gather in large groups this holiday season.

Next week's Thanksgiving weekend poses a particular concern. Americans traditionally travel home to be with loved ones, taking part in meals, parades and shopping sprees.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) strongly recommended that this year, Americans stay home and celebrate only with those they live with.

The nation's top infectious disease expert Dr Anthony Fauci...

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From the Right

In October 1789, George Washington issued our nation’s first Thanksgiving proclamation, declaring that Thursday, Nov. 26 would be “devoted by the People of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being, who is the beneficent Author of all the good that was, that is, or that will be.”

Washington was just a few months into his first term. It was far from clear that our fledgling nation would survive, much less still be thriving over two centuries later.

Yet Washington found much to be thankful for....

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From the Left

The United States is now in what disaster-preparedness experts once modeled as a worst-case scenario. We are flooded with a highly transmissible virus that causes unpredictable symptoms: sometimes mild, sometimes fatal. The curve is not flat, or even a curve. It’s almost a line that points straight upward. More than 1,000 Americans are dying every day, on average. Soon that number will likely hit 2,000.

In this precarious moment, many Americans are planning to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday by traveling and having dinner with 10 or more people. Pandemic models...

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