After weekend spike, confirmed COVID-19 cases hold at 22

Baker: No ‘starting gun’ as businesses reopen beginning May 18.

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases remains at 22. — Lexi Pline

Updated 4:10 pm

After a spike over the weekend, the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 remained at 22 Monday, according to the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital’s daily update.

As of Monday, the hospital has tested 476 patients. Of those tests, 450 have come back negative and four are pending results. There are currently no COVID-19 patients being hospitalized at the hospital.

According to a report from the Island’s boards of health, the 22 confirmed cases are split evenly between males and females. Seven of the cases are aged 50-59 years old, seven cases are 60-69 years old, two are 30-39 years old, five are 20-29 years old, and one is 20 years old or younger.

Gov. Charlie Baker said the state is planning to open in phases on May 18 as advised by the federal government, but stressed that it will not be business as usual.

“There won’t be anyone firing a starting gun on May 18 and saying everybody’s off to the races, but we do hope that certain types of businesses and workplaces will be able to resume operations under the guidelines of this process,” Baker said.

Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito said the advisory group put together to guide the reopening of the economy continues to develop a plan, but clarified that only the advisory board’s report will be released on May 18.

“Some industry sectors will be more ready than others,” Polito said. “That’s what May 18 is, it doesn’t mean the economy across our commonwealth will reopen, it’s just not possible as everybody knows.”

Meanwhile, the Boston Globe reported that around 1 pm, hundreds of people gathered outside the Massachusetts State House Monday to call for an end to restrictions designed to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

In videos posted on Twitter, protestors can be seen holding signs saying “end shutdown” and “Governor Baker end lockdown hoax.”

Super Happy Fun American, a group who identified as one of the rally’s hosts on its website, called the protest a Liberty Rally.

“Americans are suffering due to the unprecedented economic shutdown imposed by the government as a response to COVID-19.  The politicians, bureaucrats, and media remain gainfully employed while they callously dismiss concerns about the impact their decisions have upon our jobs, wages, and well-being.

On Monday, May 4, there was a significant drop in the number of new cases reported and the number of new deaths. There were 1,000 new cases reported by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health, for a total of 69,087. There were 86 new COVID-19-related deaths for a total of 4,090. Currently, 5 percent of all cases are hospitalized, with 15,652 new tests reported today, for a total of 324,268 total tests conducted.

The state is also gearing up for Wednesday when Baker’s executive order that all people in public wear face coverings goes into effect.

Per the order, violators may face fines of up to $300, but enforcement is left up to local city and town officials. While stressing the need for face coverings Baker asked people not to buy medical grade masks which should be reserved for health care workers and first responders.

The order requires the nose and mouth to be covered with a bandanna, t-shirt, cloth mask, painters mask, and other material. The requirement would not apply to children two years of age and younger or people with medical issues that would prevent them from wearing a mask, according to Baker.

Updated to include Boston protests. -ed.


    • Trump administration is now predicting 3000 deaths a day by June 1st. Who are you willing to infect and possibly kill by not wearing a mask? Do you have a mom? Looks like those who’ve been willing to sacrifice those at risk won. Winning. Bigly. Going back to work too soon is killing people. Trump’s re-election slogan can be Make Americans Dead. MAD. As in crazy. And some people think it’s malarkey to wear a mask.

    • crayson– nice one word comment– could you please clarify what part or parts of this article you consider ‘Malarkey” ? Do you think the reported ratio of male and female patients is “malarkey”?
      Perhaps the reported number of new cases or deaths is “malarkey” ?
      Please do not introduce ‘malarkey” into this thread if you don’t want to be clear about what you are saying, thank you. If you have a point, please make it, and be ready to defend it. That is the basis of our freedom of speech democracy and our civil discourse. . To just randomly say ” malarkey” is the definition of “malarkey” .
      In case I am not being clear, your comment “malarkey” is “malarkey”

  1. Belated Birthday Blessings, Betsy! Thank you for your years of caring, professional service.

  2. One has to wonder if all states have their share of covidiots or if they are the same protesters traveling around from state to state. I also wonder if claustrophobia is considered a medical issue when it comes to wearing a face mask.

    • “I feel this lockdown has gone on too long”.

      Covid-19 doesn’t give a hoot about anyone’s feelings.

      And we had a shortened flu season this year because with all the health guidelines in place, there wasn’t the usual flu transmission. It’s dangerous to falsely state that safety measures don’t save lives. They do. The protestors against the lockdowns, some of them white suprematists, are again being defended by Trump, the good-people-on-all-sides President, even when one of the sides is a bunch of Nazis. Governors should not make deals or negotiate with very dangerous, ignorant bullies who the president calls good people who are angry. Those idiots protesting in Boston are not good people. They are idiots who just happen to be spreading disease. This pandemic is out of control because we have no leadership. What we have is a dangerous president whose incapacity to care about human lives is driving us into a hell we never dreamed of. It’s going to get a lot worse on the island this summer. Without biting the bullet and giving up the summer, we will all be sorry.

      • I am not a supremacist by any means.However, even supremacists have freedom of speech and just because we don’t agree with them doesn’t mean that the constitution and Bill of rights doesn’t apply to them. Also the swastikas are there to imply that these certain governors are acting like Nazi dictators like Grethen Whitmer.I dont condone any form of racism,but people do have the right to be racist if that’s their choice.

        • Of all the people to get your support, you choose racists and irresponsibly dangerous people who will spread disease? FYI, the majority of Americans, who are indeed decent, stand behind our brave heroes and do what we can to support them. But yes, you’re right, the most imbecilic ideas are freely expressed here.

        • But what about the rights of other to be treated as equals? Why is their freedom and sense of safety secondary to the right to abuse free speech?

        • crayson–3 kellyanne’s to you for spinning why swastikas at what are basically trump rallies.
          I wonder what you think the confederate flags are implying about the governor ?
          I think it might not have anything to do with an American governor, and more to do with just spreading racist hate any chance they get.
          Also, I am not a professor of the history of the third reicht , but I thought they only had one dictator.

  3. Today I went the Edgartown Stop and Shop Pharmacy and there was a sign posted behind the counter that said something along the lines of: “All vaccines cancelled due to Covid-19” and it seemed to perfectly incapsulate the collateral damage and unintended consequences of this shutdown. How many people are putting their short-term and long-term health at risk because their routine doctor’s appointments or elective medical procedures have been cancelled due to the shutdown? Across the country hospitals and medical practices big and small are laying off staff or shutting down entirely because a majority of their regular medical appointments and procedures have been cancelled due to the shutdown. Is our hospital is jeopardy of a similar fate? I think this is is something our hospital officials need to address. When I read these articles and comments it is clear people are looking at this virus as a single variable equation — that shutting down our businesses and to a large extent our regular health care system has a direct correlation to the number of lives saved.
    But anyone who looks at the larger picture and is being intellectually honest knows that’s simply not true. The truth is this shutdown will have a real cost in terms of human lives whether it be from suicides or substance abuse or an inability to access regular health care. I fully support wearing masks and practicing social distancing, but I feel this lockdown has gone on too long, and I am not alone. The studies emerging now are starting to show that not only are lockdowns ineffective, but that they actually might be counterproductive and that allowing people to go out and get some fresh air and sunlight might actually be a positive in stopping the spread of this virus. Now I am sure just by citing these facts and these studies I will be accused of being a monster (several times people on this site have asked me which one of my family members I want to die just for making these points) but I think people need to start taking a broader and more nuanced view of this problem instead of just trying to shout the other side down when they don’t agree.

    • I would like to read the studies you speak of that indicate “lockdowns are ineffective”. Thank you for directing we (and anyone else who wants to find them).

      • From the Wall Street Journal April 26:
        “Do Lockdowns Save Many Lives? In Most Places, the Data Say No.”

        From April 24:
        “Sunlight Kills Coronavirus Quickly, Says Top DHS Official.”

        From Scientific American April 3:
        “Covid-19 Is Likeky to Lead to an Increase in Suicides.”

        From Al Jezeera April 26:
        “Sunlight and Humidity kill Coronavirus the Fastest: US Scientists.”

        From the public April 24: “Lockdown don’t work.”

        From The National Review April 15: “Study shows Covid More Likely Spread Indoors”

    • It’s not that kinda lockdown. You’ve always been allowed to go outside for fresh air and sunlight.

      • You are correct. I meant to use term shutdown instead of lockdown throughout. I started using shutdown in my comment but switched to lockdown in error. Although some have used lockdown I agree it is not an accurate term in this context

        • I understand and have been calling it a lockdown, too. I just meant that we are lucky in that we can still get some sunshine while practicing the rules. I’m sure it’s a little trickier for city mice to maintain social distancing if everyone wants to be outdoors at once, but yeah, definitely good for our mental health to safely take in nature.

    • “How many people are putting their short-term and long-term health at risk because their routine doctor’s appointments or elective medical procedures have been canceled due to the shutdown?” This is an excellent point/question. I wish I had an answer, or, at least a reaction that I could share as a response. Yes, sunlight denatures SARS COVID-2. (A virus is not a living thing. You can’t kill it.) However, sunlight will not cure COVID-19, the disease caused bySARS COVID-2. (UV light has been used as a therapy for psoriasis for a while but comes with a risk of melanoma.) The same goes for humidity. Works for the virus but not the disease. (One ca single unfortunate soul and a tiny shred of single-stranded possibly floating in mid-air RNA to create a disaster.

    • I agree that more interaction will be the cause of more deaths.
      How many is too many?
      Summer people?
      Day trippers?

    • This virus has a very simple formula.
      More human contact = more human deaths.
      The individual take on human contact is function of who they know that has died

  4. Were there any Arbeit Macht Frei signs in Boston? Makes it hard to believe these groups are solely concerned about the economy or liberty when things like that show up in the mix.

    Again, I will never see the point in gathering during a pandemic. Good job jeopardizing everyone else’s chance at getting back to work ASAP by creating more opportunities for transmission. The only agenda you’re helping along belongs to the virus.

    • Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances

      • You don’t understand the meaning of this, obviously. It’s not black and white, except to people who can’t think otherwise. But yes, go ahead and concern yourself with irresponsible, dangerous anger that will hurt yourself and those you love. When it hits you where it hurts the most, and it will, you’ll have a change of heart.

      • crayson- there are exceptions. You can’t go into a crowded movie theater and start yelling that it is on fire. In that case , the liar’s right to free speech is trumped by public safety concerns. You also cannot incite to riot.
        Illegal public gatherings are often broken up, and people are arrested for refusing to disperse. In the case of this pandemic, there are obvious concerns about public safety.
        In any case, congress has not passed any law abridging any freedoms.

      • ” The prohibition on abridgment of the freedom of speech is not absolute. Certain types of speech may be prohibited outright. Some types of speech may be more easily constrained than others. Furthermore, speech may be more easily regulated depending upon the location at which it takes place.” I am not a lawyer. This downloadable pdf gives a concise (if one can call 38 pages concise) summary of examples of exceptions to the Frist Amendment, including court cases, references, and citations. Relevant to this forum would, “fighting words.”

      • Crayson, again, consider the word peaceably and why it was included. Hundreds standing close together during a pandemic without masks means more potential illness and death, even for those who aren’t in attendance. So what are we saying? Physical harm stemming from a rally only counts if a gun’s involved and it’s immediate? They’re knowingly endangering public health and our economic recovery. That extends beyond personal liberty.

        The Nazi symbols are not meant to show governors they’re being Nazis. These people know exactly what they’re promoting. Governor Pritzker should have the right to do his job and protect his state without encountering anti-Semitic intimidation. If someone disagrees with him or other officials? Fine, but with rights come responsibilities. Why aren’t we putting the onus on protesters to refrain from causing harm with their words and actions? There’s no better way to communicate their point? No one should be hiding behind the Constitution or using it as an excuse not to think. There’s far more to building a decent society than free speech, and there is nothing pro-freedom about a blatant Auschwitz reference or the rest of it. Let’s not normalize this further. Vile is vile. If the president won’t say that, we have to. And if we can’t even depend on bipartisan denunciation of Nazis by 2020, then God help us on making progress elsewhere.

      • Crayon, 3 people have now tried to educate you about why your quote shows your lack of understanding of it.

  5. You don’t get to set the limits of the constitution based on YOuR feelings. I don’t need any education from the liberal left who at every turn try to undermine the legitamcy of the constitution. The only amendments have already been made,27 to be exact and they don’t support your agenda.

    • Crayon, you’re blowing hot air. Liberals did not set the fact that our freedoms are not absolute. Don’t try to defend your ignorance. You don’t know what you’re talking about.

  6. My comment on racism is the legality of it. It is legal. Now ,racial discrimination is illegal as it should be. Trying to put words in my mouth is not illegal,tying to be the thought police is illegal,no authority can persecute you for a thought. I will say it again I’m not for racism. I am for the sanctity of the constitution and the Bill of rights.

    • “So-called “fighting words” also lay beyond the pale of First Amendment protection.19 The
      “fighting words” doctrine began in Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, where the Court held that
      fighting words, by their very utterance inflict injury or tend to incite an immediate breach of the peace and may be punished consistent with the First Amendment.20 In Chaplinsky, the Court
      upheld a statute which prohibited a person from addressing “any offensive, derisive or annoying
      word to any other person who is lawfully in any street or other public place,” calling “him by any
      offensive or derisive name,” or making “any noise or exclamation in his presence and hearing
      with the intent to deride, offend or annoy him, or to prevent him from pursuing his lawful
      business or occupation.”21 (Congressional Research Service 7-5700b

      This summary was prepared at the request of Congress. It’s contents are not right or left. It is the law.

    • If you think the country’s founding documents and philosophies are sacred, why invest in only one portion? What about the pesky matter of unalienable preservation of life? Knowingly risking transmission of a virus and getting someone’s grandmother killed flies in the face of that edict, which supersedes man-made laws based on its natural origin.

      No one is being persecuted, or prosecuted, for having thoughts. I agree that the right to peaceably assemble during non-pandemic times is pretty solid. But when the nature of the gathering itself creates a hazard, as it does with a contagion afoot, its legal legs become wobbly. There are prior cases that back up this line of thinking — it’s not just a matter of our personal feelings. I still believe protesters have a right to speak out, but they could make use of the internet or a phone and spare a life. Ever tried to pursue happiness while being dead? It’s really hard.

      Yes, prejudice is legal in some forms. Did anyone suggest arresting the Nazi crowd? Don’t think so. I mentioned our president might verbally condemn them. Make an effort to shut down the same ideology that leads to crime. There’s nothing in the Constitution that says free speech must go unanswered. And why is this a partisan issue? Every American should be concerned with peaceful co-existence. Not in the history of ever has Nazi propaganda been used in a non-intimidating way. True freedom is about more than not being locked up. Minorities may never feel completely free as long as there is support for the antipathy they face and the dangers that come with it.

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