Reopening of Restaurants: Too Soon?

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By: Jimena Hallal, Loyola Sophomore 

Over the past year, the citizens of the Chicago area have had to deal with restaurants and bars shutting down and opening up again.

The opening of restaurants all depends on the stage that Chicago is in their plan of reopening the city amidst COVID-19.

With the reopening of restaurants, the Chicago citizens are dealt with the question of whether it is good that the restaurants are opening again or if there need to be more restrictions. 

Recently, restaurants have been opening up to a bigger amount of people. They are now at 50% at capacity, with six people being able to sit at a table. Restaurants are able to have indoor, outdoor dining, takeout, and delivery. There are different reactions to the re-opening of restaurants by students from Chicago. 

There are many different opinions on whether restaurants and bars should open once again, from believing that there should be no dine-in options to being excited that they will open once again. 

Isabella Vari, a sophomore at Loyola University Chicago, felt scared at first. She said, “I feel it’s a bit premature. It’s just too risky, especially considering the new variants that vaccines don’t cover.”

While there are people like Vari, who are scared and believe it is premature, there are also people who understand that restaurants reopening is necessary. 

Sara Barnes, a freshman at Loyola, said “ I personally don’t feel great about it because the pandemic is still a huge issue but I also understand that people need to work.” 

Many others try to look at both sides of the argument. 

Nick Schuelke, a freshman at the university, said, “It’s hard to have a firm opinion because on the one hand small business need to be open and they’d like to think after a year of this s**t that people would be able to think for themselves and make an educated choice to stay home if need be or limit your travel. On the other hand, however, the American people never cease to amaze with their ability to completely forego rational thought. So thanks to a slow response from governments across the country many businesses are forced to open or die and the people do not seem to have even grasped the concept fully. The mere existence of the virus is still considered a ‘political opinion’ and as long as that’s still a fact it’ll be nearly impossible to make progress.” 

People believe that the reopening of restaurants is necessary for businesses. 

Mary Pins, a sophomore at Loyola said, “Honestly, I feel like it is necessary cause so many restaurants have gone out of business already. I don’t think small business owners should be punished because the government has done an extremely inadequate job at changeling the pandemic.”

Others see the reopening as a form of hope for the future and the help of vaccinations. 

Carlos Bueso, a sophomore at Loyola said, “Vaccination rates have proved it possible following health guidelines.” 

With different opinions and variables, it is difficult to know what is best for the city and for the health of the people.

Maddie Stirckland, a senior at Loyola said, “[It is] good for the restaurants because the restaurants have been suffering, and as long as people social distance then I don’t mind going to restaurants.”

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