People stand in line to enter a restaurant on Ocean Drive in Miami Beach, Florida in June 2020. — AFP/VNA Photo
WASHINGTON — Accused of failing to uphold their civic duty, younger Americans are behind the current COVID -19 surge, with several states moving to close bars, beaches and other places that saw huge crowds when lockdowns were eased.
The median age for new cases in Florida in the past few days has fluctuated between 34 and 36. In Los Angeles, 40 per cent of new cases are among those under 40. And in the greater Phoenix area, the major center of the contagion in Arizona, half are under the age of 35.
In total, half or more of all the cases in California and Arizona since the start of the pandemic have been among the 18-49 age group, and the rate is expected to rise.
This in turn has fueled innumerable calls for individual responsibility from mayors, governors and federal officials in recent days.
"We issue a particular plea to young people," Vice President Mike Pence said Wednesday, urging the use of masks. "This is about protecting our most vulnerable."
Bars have been shut once more in Texas, California and parts of Michigan. In Florida, they can't serve alcohol anymore.
In Texas, the governor has also banned "tubing" — floating down a river in the inner tube of a tire. Thousands of the state's youths were going tubing, often in large groups, prior to the ban. — AFP