This analysis was excerpted from the April 24 edition of CNN’s Meanwhile in America, the daily email about US politics for global readers. Click here to read past editions and subscribe. (CNN)Does anyone really want a barber’s fingers in their face right now?Those of us who have discovered that we’re not essential to keeping society running have been stuck at home for weeks. We’re going stir crazy in the suddenly limited box of our lives, and a daily commute is starting to sound pretty good.But that may not mean we’re ready to cram into a sports crowd, wear out a bar stool or accept the promise of the old Southwest Airlines ad: “You are now free to move about the country”? Fear of contagion still has us veering away when strangers approach — and that skittishness could ultimately slow an economic rebound.Another 4.4 million Americans filed first-time jobless claims last week, bringing the number of people who’ve lost work in the past five weeks to an apocalyptic 26.5 million. Each individual claim represents a life on edge. People who never had their hands out before are going to food banks, and the unemployment rate is suddenly approaching Great Depression territory.


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