In the latest innovation in Germany’s coronavirus strategy, Berlin’s authorities have decided to let nightclubs remain open, but ban dancing. The capital’s government was responding to a decision by the federal authorities that clubs should close in areas where the weekly Covid-19 incidence rate is over 350 per 100,000 (the current number in Berlin is around 360).
Berlin’s authorities claim they do not have the legal authority to close clubs, as German law apparently classifies them as businesses rather than leisure facilities. As a response, Christian Gaebler, state secretary of the Berlin Senate, said that in the absence of proper legal grounds, for now, tanzen ist verboten.
The decision is a far cry from the measures the Berlin Senate said it wanted to take earlier this week, which would have included closing clubs, bars, restaurants, museums and more – a lockdown in all but name.
The fear in the German capital is that the imminent ban on dancing, which will come into force next week (8 December), could lead to scenes of revellers rhythmically swaying on their feet, eyes glazed, for entire weekends. Imagine that.
[see also: How Covid-19 cases have surged in Germany]