Thorns & Roses: The Worst, Best & Most Absurd (4/8)

Thorn: is this just the start?

A prickly thorn goes to the jackwad who allegedly attacked young adults in Norton Commons because, allegedly, they were not social distancing. A video shows a man pushing three young women and grabbing another by the neck. John Rademaker has been charged with strangulation and other crimes, The Courier Journal reported. A police spokeswoman (and former CJ police reporter) told the paper that people concerned about “large gatherings” should call 311 or 911: “Obviously, we do not advise individuals concerned about social distancing to take matters into their own hands and confront people about it, especially in any physical way,” Jessie Halladay wrote. Right… But you know these incidents will happen increasingly as the epidemic continues. Update: The jackwad is a doctor.

Rose: Beware COVID-19 pirates

So… now, the city will require written approval for pop-up COVID-19 testing sites that are not part of a health facility or have previous city approval. You might recall that two companies had set up shop, charging $200 to $250, before being run out of the city. 

Rose: Can doing the right thing be infectious?

These are times that challenge people’s beliefs. Like Kentucky Secretary of State Michael Adams, a conservative Republican who told The CJ’s Phillip Bailey he may endorse mail-in ballots instead of in-person voting. “I ran during the campaign opposed to a vote-by-mail system, but I’m a realist,” Adams said. “The most important thing for me is ensuring we have a free and fair election.”

Rose: Get ready for lines

Good on Kroger for deciding to limit the number of shoppers allowed in the stores at any one time. It also will experiment with one-way aisles (it was not clear whether that will happen in Louisville). Maybe the carts should get turn signals and poles that jut out six feet on each side to ensue proper distancing!

Rose + Thorn: Say it ain’t so, Joe

CJ columnist Joe Gerth tweeted: “Today, 25% of my Courier Journal colleagues are taking a week of unpaid furlough. I’ll be taking a week later this month, in May and in June. This is a tough time for newspapers as it is for all businesses. Please, if you can afford it, subscribe. Local journalism is important.” The CJ gets a rose for continuing to do great work writing the first draft of history, but Gannett gets the thorn for mismanaging the chain and putting shareholders ahead of readers.