‘The psyche of all of us has changed’ – What’s to come in a post-pandemic New Jersey

As the Garden State continues its economic reopening, many have asked when things can go back to normal.

News 12 Staff

May 19, 2020, 11:36 PM

Updated 1,517 days ago

Share:

Gov. Phil Murphy announced Tuesday that starting at 6 a.m. Wednesday, car and motorcycle dealers, along with bike shops, can reopen from the coronavirus shutdown for in-person sales.
As the Garden State continues its economic reopening, many have asked when things can go back to normal. But – has COVID-19 changed New Jersey for good? Can things ever truly go back to the way they were before?
“I think that just as 9/11 changed life in some ways forever, I think this has that reality as well,” Murphy said Tuesday.
In a post-pandemic world, the balance of personal freedoms and physical safety may be at odds.
“Exactly what will be the level…that society will move towards in the future? What freedoms will be given up in order to minimize the risk of death? I can’t answer that, but clearly those are the questions that should be raised,” said New Jersey Department of Health communicable disease service medical director Edward Lifshitz.
Some New Jerseyans have criticized the governor for being too slow to reopen the state’s economy. Some small business owners have reopened their establishments, even though they are barred from operating under the executive order. But Murphy says that these rules are essential to keeping New Jersey safe from the virus.
“There’s one binding set of rules of the road, and it’s ours,” he said Tuesday. “And that has been the case and that will be the case.”
Photos: Your Coronavirus Pandemic Experience
undefined

New Jersey’s governorship has historically been one of the most powerful in the nation. The authority a New Jersey governor has only increased under a public health emergency. As governor, Murphy has executive power under the state constitution, a Legislature controlled by fellow Democrats and he is not up for re-election again for another 18 months.
“We move as one state,” Murphy said.
But the lingering question remains – what kind of changes could be permanents in a state looking to stay safe and healthy?
“The psyche of all of us has changed. And I think it’s changed…permanently,” the governor said.
The Department of Health says that it plans to increase testing in some of the state's urban areas. The goal is to increase COVID-19 testing in Elizabeth, Trenton, Camden, Paterson, Atlantic City and Newark.


More from News 12
2:58
Jury asks if unanimity required to acquit 'on a single count' at Sen. Bob Menendez's bribery trial

Jury asks if unanimity required to acquit 'on a single count' at Sen. Bob Menendez's bribery trial

HEAT ALERT: Extreme heat today in NJ as temps feel near 103 degrees; possible thundershower tonight

HEAT ALERT: Extreme heat today in NJ as temps feel near 103 degrees; possible thundershower tonight

1:34
Vacant building fire in Plainfield causes roof collapse; investigation underway

Vacant building fire in Plainfield causes roof collapse; investigation underway

1:18
Going for gold: A look at some New Jersey athletes heading to the Paris Olympic Games

Going for gold: A look at some New Jersey athletes heading to the Paris Olympic Games

0:28
Mays Landing man pleads guilty to murdering his mother

Mays Landing man pleads guilty to murdering his mother

2:04
Route 15 temporary bridge in Jefferson opens earlier than expected

Route 15 temporary bridge in Jefferson opens earlier than expected

0:28
Woman jumps out of window in Franklin Township to avoid being struck by bullets

Woman jumps out of window in Franklin Township to avoid being struck by bullets

2:14
Don't be caught in the dark: Are you ready to power through hurricane season?

Don't be caught in the dark: Are you ready to power through hurricane season?

0:48
NJ Attorney General’s Office releases video of fatal South Brunswick motel standoff with NYC suspect

NJ Attorney General’s Office releases video of fatal South Brunswick motel standoff with NYC suspect

3:30
Trump heads to convention as authorities investigate motive, security in assassination attempt

Trump heads to convention as authorities investigate motive, security in assassination attempt

0:23
Newark official: 5 men stabbed in Ironbound neighborhood

Newark official: 5 men stabbed in Ironbound neighborhood

0:18
New Jersey American Water issues mandatory water restrictions for parts of Ocean, Monmouth counties

New Jersey American Water issues mandatory water restrictions for parts of Ocean, Monmouth counties

3:04
Made in New Jersey: For nearly 150 years, Serratelli Hat Company in Newark has served the hat industry

Made in New Jersey: For nearly 150 years, Serratelli Hat Company in Newark has served the hat industry

0:24
Fire officials: 2 people trapped inside car after hitting parked trucks at Cherry Hill rest stop

Fire officials: 2 people trapped inside car after hitting parked trucks at Cherry Hill rest stop

1:59
Trump supporters at Bedminster golf course call for unity in aftermath of attempted assassination

Trump supporters at Bedminster golf course call for unity in aftermath of attempted assassination

2:07
A look back at US political violence that changed history

A look back at US political violence that changed history

5:30
In prime-time address, Biden warns of election-year rhetoric, saying ‘it’s time to cool it down’

In prime-time address, Biden warns of election-year rhetoric, saying ‘it’s time to cool it down’

4:10
EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Trump rally attendee gives his eyewitness account of the shooting

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Trump rally attendee gives his eyewitness account of the shooting

2:27
Political analyst weighs in on gun violence in wake of Trump rally shooting

Political analyst weighs in on gun violence in wake of Trump rally shooting

2:03
Poll: More than 40% of women skip or delay medical screenings and appointments

Poll: More than 40% of women skip or delay medical screenings and appointments