It’s been a tough week for America and Los Angeles. The idiotic, murderous, criminal behavior of an ill-trained “veteran” Police officer in Minneapolis has resulted in a wave of legal protests across the Country that ultimately morphed into rioting, looting, fires and despair for our cities. Curfews were declared throughout Los Angeles, City and County. Malibu joined by declaring a 6:00 PM to 6:00 AM curfew for Sunday, Monday and who knows how much longer.
Coming as this does on the heels of almost 3 months of Covid- 19 lockdown it’s hard not to get depressed about the future of our Nation and life as we used to know it.
There are reasons to be hopeful about the Covid Pandemic. The rate of new infections has leveled off in the nation and Los Angeles County. The ratio of deaths to infections is falling as the most vulnerable; infected through an insane policy decision to house the infected in Senior care and assisted living facilities, have already succumbed. Our health care professionals have learned how to more effectively treat the infected and prevent new infections with new protocols in the Senior care and assisted living facilities. The widespread adoption of masks and social distancing is making the reopening of large swaths of society possible.
Last week I had a few conversations with Kal Klatte, a longtime resident with expertise in statistical analysis and charting. Kal’s desire to understand the data being delivered through the media firehose, resulted in a plan. Mr. Klatte decided to go to the John Hopkins website at the same time each day and chart the total infections, new infections and deaths. To smooth out the effects of weekends and spotty reporting, he developed a chart depicting a running 7 day average number of new deaths. In the last month the trend line of new nationwide deaths has become a straight and steadily descending line. If the current trend continues, the Country will dip below 50 new deaths a day within thirty days. Any surge in new infections has the potential to alter the trend.
There is a map making the rounds on the internet that is quite illuminating. It depicts the entire USA and is overlaid in 3 colors. Red depicts 33% of all infections and covers New York City and nearby parts of NY State. (It is truly unfortunate that the decision to stop flights from Europe was not made sooner). Yellow depicts the next 33% of infections and it shows the denser areas north, south and west of NY plus Chicago and Detroit. The final 33% is depicted by green covering the balance of the continental US and Hawaii.
We are lucky to be here in the least affected part of LA County.
In the next two weeks we will learn if there is a second wave surge in infections as a result of all the protests and turmoil that did not honor social distancing guidelines.
Stay safe everyone.