David Marcus, in a New York Post op-ed this week, demanded that Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio reopen New York already, because this whole lockdown is a bummer. Everyone else enjoys staying home all the time, so Marcus is sharing a bold and unique perspective.

Meanwhile, the Big Apple is ­dying.

Yes, he contrasts the 28,540 literal deaths from COVID-19 with New York City's metaphorical death. New York has “died" several times in the past, but the Big Apple has always bounced back. You can't resurrect human beings with some Starbucks and a Shake Shack.

Its streets are empty. The bars and jazz clubs, restaurants and coffeehouses sit barren. Beloved haunts, storied rooms, perfect-slice joints are shuttered, many for good. The sweat equity of countless small-business owners is evaporating. ­Instead of getting people back to work providing for their families, our mayor talks about a fantasyland New Deal for the post-coronavirus era.

That all sucks! (Well, the New Deal thing sounds good, if someone other than de Blasio was involved. I don't trust him to tie his shoes let alone bust an FDR-style move.) The coronavirus struck New York and all of America like an asteroid. I get that people want “their lives back," but you can't just quit a pandemic. That's not how this works.


Charlie Sheen Funny Scene (Two And A Half Men) - Can't Quit Poverty www.youtube.com

It needs to end. Now.

Oh, I guess he does think that's how this works.

Open the city. All of it. Right now. Broadway shows, beaches, Yankees games, the schools, the top of the freakin' Empire State building. Everything. New Yorkers have already learned to socially distance. Businesses can adjust. The elderly and infirm can continue to be isolated.

Marcus is neither elderly nor infirm, but he wants to party, damnit! Let's just lock up Grandma and Tiny Tim so New Yorkers who matter can swap coronavirus at Yankee Stadium. Marcus claims New Yorkers have “learned to socially distance," but he lists activities where proper physical distance isn't feasible. The New York life Marcus wants is impossible right now.

Georgia is held up as an example of a state reopening without any negative effects. However, as conservatives are wont to observe, Georgia isn't New York. It also looks like Georgia is fudging its numbers. Marcus claims that New York hospitals were never overwhelmed, but the Post itself described hospitals as “overwhelmed" on March 27.

It's also not true, as Marcus argues, that New York leadership has no plan for ending its lockdown. Cuomo has stated that this is not a sustainable situation, but reopening must take a deliberate, phased approach. Otherwise, you risk undoing all the progress made and jeopardizing lives.

If our elected leaders won't save the world's greatest city from a slow death by economic strangulation, then the people of New York must do it themselves.

Seriously, New Yorkers have died actual slow, agonizing deaths. Enough with the metaphors.

Barbers, tailors, nail ­salons, sporting goods stores, movie theaters and others should open their doors — while maintaining social distancing, of course — and dare the state to shut them down.

Marcus is demanding a consumerist revolt after just two months. He also doesn't seem to grasp how the economy works. Studios aren't releasing movies right now, so there's nothing for theaters to play other than maybe some old copies of Battlefield Earth. Who's going to a tailor when everyone's working from home and most formal events are cancelled. No one needs their sweat pants let out.

The "Fox & Friends" crew championed Marcus's irresponsible and whiny op-ed Thursday morning from the safety of their homes. Guest Andrew Napolitano, a law professor and former judge, declared it was "time for all of us to come back to our normal society."

NAPOLITANO: We can live with social distancing and operate our businesses and go to restaurants and go to work and ride mass transit and liven up those streets again.

No, we can't. He's just saying things. Livening up New York streets at this point would mean deadening up New York hospitals.

BRIAN KILMEADE: They are calling for people just to massively open up their businesses throughout the city. They can't stop everyone. Would you be against that?

NAPOLITANO: I would be 100 percent in favor of it, and I think you're going to see it this weekend. Everybody fears that people from New York City are going to go to Long Island or New Jersey where the beaches will be open. I think they're going to go to the New York City beaches, and I think you're going to see businesses start to open, and I think you're going to see the police cheer them on when they do this.

That's one hell of a white wonderland where law enforcement cheers on mass law breaking. Black folks have never considered the possibility that “they can't stop" all of us. When we're involved, they will definitely try. Those motherfuckers roll up in our neighborhoods in tanks.

New York cops probably will stand down if white folks storm the beaches like they're Normandy. But the people of color who actually work at restaurants, bars, and nail salons, should keep their asses at home. No one has the right to our labor, especially at the cost of our lives.

[New York Post / Mediaite]

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Stephen Robinson

Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He's on the board of the Portland Playhouse theater and writes for the immersive theater Cafe Nordo in Seattle. Tickets are on sale now for his latest Nordo collaboration, "Curiouser and Curiouser," an adaptation of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" and "Through the Looking Glass." It promises to feel like an actual evening with SER (for good or for ill).

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