In my career as a journalist, I've covered some stories that have changed our community dramatically: The aftermath of the Sept. 11 attacks, the 2011 mass shootings at Gabby Giffords' Congress on Your Corner.
But I've never seen a week like this: Schools are closed. Our festivals have been canceled. Our sports teams aren't playing ball. Our theaters have shuttered. We've been told to keep our gatherings to fewer than 10 people. And even as I write this, Mayor Regina Romero has announced that all restaurants and bars should limit themselves to takeout service and all bars, gyms and other places where people congregate should be closed until the end of March.
All because an invisible, microscopic threat is spreading through our community.
We have proved in the past that we are a resilient community. We will beat this bug and get through this.
But the social and economic costs are going to be enormous, with many people losing their jobs.
With customers staying home, small shops are facing a mortal threat. Music venues can't offer shows. Arts organizations can't put on performances. In the peak of tourism season, visitors are staying home. And on and on and on.
The Tucson Weekly, which has been dedicated to bringing people together for three-and-a-half decades, now has a simple message: Stay home as much as possible until it's safe to do otherwise. Help your neighbors if you can. Cover your cough. And for God's sake, wash your hands frequently.
In the days and weeks to come, our team will be constantly updating the latest local news about COVID-19's impact on our lives via our website and our print edition. Stay tuned.
— Jim Nintzel Executive Editor
Hear Nintz talk about what's happening in Tucson's entertainment scene Wednesday mornings at 9:30 a.m. during The Frank Show on KLPX, 96.1 FM. Zona Politics with Jim Nintzel airs at 4 p.m. Sunday on KXCI, 91.3 FM.