Parties pooped. For the next 30 days, to limit COVID-19’s spread, Illinois is outlawing gatherings of more than 1,000 people.
■ Politico’s Shia Kapos: Gov. Pritzker, Chicago Mayor Lightfoot and Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle are “setting themselves apart from the federal government’s slow response to dealing with the virus.”
Many public schools remain open. Including Chicago’s.
■ Chicago parents complain the district hasn’t delivered adequate cleaning supplies.
■ For now, it’s a district-by-district decision. And several suburban schools are going the other way.
■ A University of Michigan public health professor explains why closing schools should be a last resort.
■ When schools close, what do poor kids eat?
■ To help keep people connected in a time of quarantine, Comcast has agreed to offer 60 days of free internet service to low-income households beginning Monday.
■ AT&T is suspending caps on broadband data.
‘There is no toilet paper, no wipes and people are getting very nervous.’ Things are getting tense and supplies are running short at some Chicago-area stores.
■ The Wall Street Journal: How China kept supermarkets stocked during its lockdown.
■ Some Starbucks stores may go drive-through only.
■ Chicago business conventions are dropping like flies.
■ Chicago hotels that expected to be 100% booked for the St. Pat’s weekend are now looking at 25%.
■ One shuttle bus service to Chicago’s airports is suspending service.
■ Blood drives are suffering, foreshadowing an “unprecedented” shortage.
■ The Onion: “Best Buy CEO Humbly Asks If Everyone Can Go Out And Buy A Cord Or Something To Help With Company’s Coronavirus Losses.”
■ And so has Vice President Pence. (Cartoon: Keith J. Taylor.)
■ The Tribune’s Rex Huppke goes into caps-lock mode to mock-praise the president’s address to the nation: “THE MOST EFFECTIVE PARTS OF THE SPEECH WERE WHEN TRUMP DIDN’T TALK ABOUT HOW MANY AMERICANS HAVE BEEN TESTED FOR THE CORONAVIRUS AND HOW MANY AMERICANS WILL NOW BE TESTED AND WHERE AMERICANS CAN GO TO BE TESTED AND WHY HE IS NOW ENCOURAGING PEOPLE TO FOLLOW HEALTH EXPERT ADVICE HE HAS BEEN EITHER DENOUNCING OR IGNORING THE PAST FEW WEEKS.”
■ The Washington Post
■ Why Trump has hesitated to declare a national emergency.
The worst case. The New York Times says epidemic experts last month modeled just how bad the pandemic could be in the U.S. and concluded “as many as … 1.7 million people could die.”
■ PolitiFact: Seven ways to avoid coronavirus misinformation.
■ The Onion: “Top U.S. Health Experts: ‘Hold On To Your Fucking Seats Because This Bitch Hasn’t Even Thought About Starting Yet.’”
Stay up to date. The Post has lowered the paywall on its continual coronavirus news updates.
■ The Trib is posting the latest Illinois developments here. The Associated Press, here. Block Club Chicago, here.
Biden in a bind. The pandemic has kneecapped Joe Biden’s campaign fundraising …
■ … even as activist groups are intensifying their fundraising for Bernie Sanders.
■ A Sun-Times editorial says this is a good time for Sanders to get out of the race.
■ Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is turning her back on Sanders.
■ Stuck at home? Now’s a good time to study up on how to vote in the Illinois primary which (as of Square’s email publication deadline) is still on, despite withdrawals from an “entirely unprecedented” number of election judges: Check the Square voter guide.
‘As the sports world goes dark, what will we do?’ Trib sports columnist Paul Sullivan answers his own question: “Get a life.”
■ The Boston Marathon has been postponed for months; and so, too, the Masters golf tourney.
■ Slate’s Henry Grabar: “We’re Not Going Back to the Way Life Was Before.”
■ The Babylon Bee: “Nation’s Nerds Wake Up In Utopia Where Everyone Stays Inside, Sports Are Canceled, Social Interaction Forbidden.”
No. 9: Laugh. The Trib’s Mary Schmich shares 10 tips for staying sane in the face of a pandemic.
■ Consumer Reports: How to work from home during the COVID-19 crisis.
■ Lifehacker: How to make it look like you’re working from home when you’re not.
■ And if you need a diversion or two, check out the Chicago Public Square podcast series.
‘Shows are better without the studio audience.’ TV critic Aaron Barnhart has a coronavirus revelation.
■ Late night’s Colbert, Fallon and Meyers are suspending production of their shows.
■ But things are looking up for the TV news biz.
■ Poynter’s Tom Jones: “Journalism on display this week during an ever-shifting and rapidly-moving story has been nothing short of spectacular.”
‘My first Worst Movie of the Year candidate.’
Rivet movie critic Rob LaFrentz takes aim at Bloodshot.
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