Patrons of Forsyth, Unite!


Picture of ramen!

As I stare into my pantry, I let out a huge sigh. Another meal, another cup of instant noodles and curry. My dear mother has had it with this virus and “every meal at home” insanity. I don’t blame her or any parent. With no end in sight, how can any student expect Rachel Ray, Martha Stewart, or Gordon Ramsay style dishes every night, let alone breakfast and lunch? While our local grocery stores are hiring more and more workers, our restaurants and favorite hangouts sit empty, dilapidated in Georgia’s humid, yet scorching heat.

Banquets and catering services have come to a screeching halt. Schools and companies have turned into zombie states of ghost cafeterias tattered with loose paper and visible dust everywhere.

I propose a call for action. Save our local restaurants and businesses. Every week, a popular restaurant closes because it cannot survive without certain profit margins. With all of the attention towards protests, rallies, and movements, we should certainly add patronizing our local businesses to that list.

Our state government is doing little to help our current situation. As businesses and restaurants are making masks mandatory for entering, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp has opposed putting any regulations on mask-wearing, which has encouraged average citizens to abide by such restrictions. Governor Kemp was directing his executive order in public places and venues. It is certainly up to the local businesses what rules they can set for their respective establishments.

Yet, the cavalier attitude of the wording and opposition to Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms’ regulations of strict enforcement of mask-wearing sets a wrong example to the citizens of Georgia. Many young people will take this as a reason to not wear a mask and even not patronize a local business that enforces masks.

The new order gives the opportunity for local businesses and governments to impose mask mandates. But, there is a catch. The mask mandates can only be imposed if it passes a certain “threshold”. This threshold being that there must be 100 cases per 100,000 people in the previous fourteen days. Also, this order extends the restrictions on large gatherings and still requires businesses to follow safety protocols to remain open. 

“The fight against COVID-19 continues, and these executive orders reaffirm our commitment to protect the lives and livelihoods of all Georgians,” Kemp said on July 31

Churches should send out messages to take turns every week to patronize certain restaurants and rotate schedules to do so. Schools should have free advertising for local businesses so that we can know what bargains and deals are out there.

Households could forgo one of the many video streaming services and enroll in one of the eating apps such as DoorDash, UberEats, or Grubhub on every phone and computer. Since dining-in is still not an option for some, I believe it is in our best interest to utilize many services to keep restaurants open and running healthy and safe. We must band together to keep our local economies strong. I’m not sure how much longer I can stand microwaving instant foods at this rate.