The coronavirus pandemic clarified around the globe what things people consider “essential” even though they are not crucial for survival. In an attempt to slow down the killer bug, governments are issuing orders or guidance for citizens to stay in their homes. Panic buying ensued and we made a break down of the things people can’t do without.
First off, there’s general agreement: health care workers, law enforcement, utility workers, food production and communications are generally exempt from lockdowns.
All U.S. states are listing the information technology sector as essential. The world’s dependency on the internet has become even more apparent as countless people confined to their homes communicate, stream movies and play games online.
Several states where marijuana is legal, such as California and Washington, deemed pot shops as essential.
Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont added gun shops to his list of essential businesses, causing shock among families of gun violence victims. Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on Tuesday quietly allowed gun shops to reopen, but only by appointment. Gun shops are also essential in Texas.
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey included golf courses on his list. Officials in Phoenix encouraged the city’s 1.7 million residents to “get outside, get exercise and practice responsible social distancing” in golf courses, parks, and trails. Governor also included payday lenders as necessary during the pandemic.
In California, construction lobbyists managed to put this industry on the essentials list.
New Mexico allowed liquor stores to remain open, considering that this state ranks first in alcohol-related deaths per capita, and claiming that shutting them down would result in people with alcoholism seeking emergency medical attention, taking resources away from the coronavirus.
In New Hampshire, Gov. Chris Sununu said flower shops are among the essentials. Asked why spokesman Ben Vihstadt said they provide essential services for funeral homes.
In the meantime, in Italy, only food stores and pharmacies remain open. In the UK, liquor turned out to be essential, in France that proved to be pastry, wine, and cheese.