The Atlantic Daily: Stay Home Anyway

May’s dreams of flattening the curve fell to the surge in coronavirus cases in late June. Now July threatens to test Americans’ resolve.

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In a normal year, July would signal a bit of relief, a kind of seventh-inning stretch for the nation. But this year’s will likely bring more of the same: Americans won’t be getting a vacation from this virus.

Here’s what to consider on the eve of the new month:

Coronavirus testing could break down again. Robinson Meyer and Alexis C. Madrigal warn of looming test shortages and delayed turnaround times for results, which would threaten the country’s ability to monitor and contain the virus.

In cities, summer leisure will rely more and more on shared public spaces. “The summer of social distancing will also be one of social closeness between neighbors, illuminating divides of class, ethnicity, and place—as leisure has always done,” Spencer Kornhaber writes.

Just because you can do something now doesn’t mean you should. Julie Beck thoughtfully considers the temptation to relax one’s safety measures: “It would be easy to give up. It would feel so good to give up. … Don’t give up.”


What to read if … you want practical tips:

What to read if … you’re waiting to hear whether universities are opening for the fall:

Ian Bogost, an Atlantic contributor and a tenured professor at Georgia Tech, argues that college presidents face poor incentives when deciding whether to hold in-person classes.

What to read if … you’d like to take a brief vacation from Earth’s dramas entirely:

Tune in to the rhythms of faraway galaxies: Astronomers are currently monitoring a particularly strange signal from afar.

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