Citing the Bill of Rights and the “ideals of civil disobedience,” the owner of Atilis Gym in Bellmawr, New Jersey, defied Governor Phil Murphy’s orders by reopening on Monday. Cops “formally” notified the gym owner he was in violation of the shutdown order and then wished him “a good day.” The crowd cheered.

Civil disobedience is alive and well, even in this pandemic. Americans are not sheep.

Last week, a Texas judge told salon owner Shelley Luther if she disagreed with Dallas’s lockdown rules, she should “hire a lawyer” and sue. Sorry, but most working people can’t afford that. They protest instead, just like Rosa Parks did half a century ago, when she refused to stay in the back of the bus.

Lawyering has a place, though. In many states, business groups, churches and state representatives are suing to overturn what they claim are freedom-stifling rules imposed by autocratic governors. On Monday, an Oregon county judge struck down Governor Kate Brown’s coronavirus restrictions, making them “null and void.” The judge said the governor’s emergency powers should last only a month, and after that, she needs legislative approval. Brown is appealing.

Last week, a Wisconsin court struck down Governor Tony Evers’ “safer at home” regimen, when Evers tried to extend it until the end of May. The court said 28 days of emergency powers is enough.

Expect a similar outcome in Michigan, where Governor Gretchen Whitmer is being sued by the state legislature. Whitmer, according to a Detroit News editorial, “declared herself the sole and absolute power in Michigan.”

Although Whitmer is a Democrat, and the legislature mostly Republican, this isn’t mere partisan wrangling. Lawmakers offered to compromise on lockdown rules, and she refused. At stake is “whether Michigan remains a representative democracy even in times of crisis,” the Detroit News editors warn.

Also at stake is earning a living. Karl Manke, a barber who reopened his shop in Owosso, Michigan, two weeks ago, has been wearing a mask, washing his hands between customers and sanitizing his tools with UV light. He’s taking safety seriously.

Yet he’s been slammed with criminal misdemeanor charges.

Manke wonders why, if it’s safe to walk down the aisles in Walmart, it isn’t safe in his barber shop. Why are big-box stores “essential businesses,” and not the little guys?

The owner of Atilis Gym in New Jersey makes the same argument. “Anything that Walmart can do,” with hundreds of customers a day, small businesses can do as safely.

The longer lockdowns drag on, the dumber rules get. Mayor Bill De Blasio announced Monday beaches will be closed and anyone who dares swim will “be taken right out of the water.” Huh? Scientific evidence shows that being outside is low risk and swimming is undoubtedly the lowest.

Don’t count on the NYPD to drag swimmers out. Across the nation, cops have displayed common sense and sympathy for their neighbors. Four sheriffs departments in Michigan have announced they’re refusing to enforce Whitmer’s orders. “With limited resources,” said Shiawassee County’s sheriff, “our priority focus will be on enforcing duly passed laws.”

Those are beautiful words, especially coming from law enforcement. Even in this health crisis, when safety is paramount, Americans are standing up for the principles of self-government and personal liberty. They know that freedoms are rarely lost in easy times. They’re instead snatched away under the guise of an emergency.

The scientific evidence pouring in about the coronavirus shows how arbitrary some lockdown rules are, especially ones targeting the young and healthy. A miniscule 1.8% of coronavirus deaths in New York City are otherwise healthy people under age 65.

Governors and mayors in New York and across the country have been calling the shots. Why should we have confidence in them? Truth is, most of them failed miserably to protect the vulnerable. A staggering 51% of coronavirus deaths in the entire country are nursing home residents. Ordering people to shut their businesses and stay home didn’t save these victims. They were already stay-ins.

Betsy McCaughey is chairman of the Committee to Reduce Infection Deaths, a former lieutenant governor of New York and author of the forthcoming “Next Pandemic,” published by Encounter Books. Her column is syndicated by Creators.

(39) comments

Ken Kovach

Bernie Mac, you said; The country would be better off if all of the freedom-hating Democrats got on a boat to Cuba. And the world would be better off if the boat sank on the way.

So here is a part of a quote for you; "Remember it didn't start with gas chambers. It started with politicians dividing the people with 'us vs them'. It started with intolerance and hate…

Bernie Mac, Democrats are not your enemy! The greatest enemy is ignorance and not being willing to open up the mind.

Ken Kovach

Bernie Mac, I wasn’t going to comment on your hateful post, but it weighs on my mind. What can one possibly say to such a comment? This morning, when my computer went to the screen saver, the quote I referenced in my last post was on the screen, and I believe it was a sign. I am not a religious person but I do believe the screen saver quotation was karma. The next time you get on a boat, think of karma, wear a life jacket, and be safe.

Bernie Mac

Sorry if my humor offended your delicate nature. As the world is, you must walk around in perpetual outrage.

Bernie Mac

Ken, spare me the holier than thou attitude. Somehow I missed your chastising the Democrats when they posted comments such as "thinning the herd". If you were consistent, your criticism might be taken seriously.

Spock Here

As I understand it, "thinning the herd" refers to a group of people willing to risk not only their own health and safety but also that of others by engaging in activities professionals say is risky....like the Lake of the Ozarks pool party. Some will catch it and pass it along...some will die. Y'all make the choice to "thin the herd", nobody is asking you to "thin the herd." So spare us all the faux outrage and stop acting like a snowflake.

Bernie Mac

When "freedom-hating Democrats" advocate the suppression of our rights, they endanger the health and safety of everyone. The loss of our freedoms will have long term effects well beyond this pandemic. If you can't see that you are blind. If "freedom-hating Democrats" drown on the way to Cuba, that would certainly "thin the herd".

Ali

Saw that pool party video...it is amazing how stupid and self-centered some people can be.

Ken Kovach

Bernie Mac, there is a 50% chance you are sending your message from Russia, so to you I say; нет такого понятия, как демократ, который ненавидит свободу. But, if you are a fellow American, I say the same to you In English, THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS A DEMOCRAT WHO HATES FREEDOM.

Spock Here

Re the pool party video: It is their constitutional right to be stupid and self centered. It's when they go home that's a problem. You know, a student having to wear a bulletproof backpack and endure school shooting drills is "the price of freedom."? But we "freedom hating democrats" want to have a science based plan to reopen fully--at least, I think that's what makes us "freedom hating". the waters are muddied by bots.

Ken Kovach

The odds of getting Covid 19 are about 10 to 20% (plus or minus). If you do get it, the odds are, on average, 1 in 175 that you will die. If you are morbidly obese, (like trump) the odds are higher. If you smoke, the odds are even higher, and if you’re old, higher still. When the virus damages your lungs to a point, you will start to pant like a dog. If you go to the hospital, they can put you into a coma and on a ventilator. Now you have a 12% chance of survival, but you will be on the ventilator for a few weeks. Whether you live or die, the medical bills could exceed the equity in your home. Too bad the repugs destroyed “The Affordable Health Care Act.” Your skin will, most likely, turn black from oxygen deprivation just before you die.

I thought I would try fear mongering, and write it in the second person to be more relatable to the trumpers. It’s an ugly thing to have to write but it needs to be understood. The good news is 80 to 90% of the people will not get this wave of Covid 19, and the more diligent we are at following the rules, the better our odds.

Journey2goremtns1

I knew it wouldn't take long to hear " It's Trump fault"

Doc Samson

Because it is all they have... one degree of Trump... lol.

Ken Kovach

Betsy said, “A staggering 51% of coronavirus deaths in the entire country are nursing home residents. Ordering people to shut their businesses and stay home didn’t save these victims. They were already stay-ins.”

Sometimes these republican talking points are so ridiculous that it seems silly to mention the obvious. Which is, someone took the virus into these nursing homes? It most likely happened before the stay at home orders. The stay at home orders were stalled for a few weeks by Trump. Therefore, Trump is indirectly responsible for many of these deaths.

Doc Samson

As if your pro-China media talking points are more valid? Please, Mr. Science, show us all where this article is wrong - https://pjmedia.com/news-and-politics/stephen-green/2020/05/21/party-of-science-still-sticking-covid-19-victims-in-nursing-homes-because-science-n412829

Ali

Bot

Doc Samson

Is that all you got? I prefer your other postings celebrating the "thinning of the herd" because we all know you can't actually address the issues with anything resembling facts or logic. Heaven forbid you allow or look into "alternative" views on something, right? Diversity of thought... as long as it's the same as mine! lol. Bot. [rolleyes]

Ali

I've not been the one to say "thin the herd." I've actually "got" a lot more, but you seem to prefer words of less then three syllables and sentences of inflexibly short and simple structure. I have looked at "alternative" views. I am not a one party hack. In fact, I used to think very much like you...then I saw that the Emperor had no clothes.

Bernie Mac

Why has Hobby Lobby been allowed to stay open?

Ken Kovach

The Hobby Lobby is operated by conservative evangelicals that don’t know the difference between freedom and liberty.

Doc Samson

Really? You have that interview? Please, do share, Mr. Facts & Logic!

Bernie Mac

Thanks for your non-answer.

Ali

Kak vii pazhyevayetye russkie bot?

Doc Samson

@Bernie Mac - It's almost sad when you go back and look at their responses. They've got nothing except insults, ridicule, or blatant support for socialism.

@Ali - You do know that there is plenty of verifiable, concrete evidence that Clinton... eh, nevermind... someone needs to reprogram your responses... "Russia bot" is so "2019"...

Ali

Look in the mirror, Doc and Bernie. All you do is insult and talk about "Chinese" news. You get what you give, ruskii bot. Studies show that 50% of the pro "open 'er up" posts on twitter come from bots...so it is not only 2019, but also 2020. If you want to debate a point, then speak like an adult and not a third grader. But then again, your cult hero speaks like a third grader.

Bernie Mac

Looks like you got me, Ali. Yep, I'm a bot.

Ali

Glad you admit it, Bernie bot.

Ken Kovach

The answer is in the definitions. “Freedom is, “Do what you want.” Liberty is, “Do what you want as long as you don’t infringe on others.” People aggravated by “the stay at home request” aren’t thinking past their own selfish wants to be free. They could pick up the virus and take it to others creating more victims and making matters worse. My point is, Hobby Lobby and all the places that have shunned and snubbed the sacrifices we all need to make, don’t understand the difference between freedom and liberty. They are among “The Don’t Tread on Me,” people that don’t realize, they are probably treading on others and ironically, each other.

Doc Samson

@Ken Kovach - "People aggravated by “the stay at home request” aren’t thinking past their own selfish wants to be free" Or they need money to pay their bills/employees. It's the trickle down effect in real time...

"They could pick up the virus and take it to others creating more victims and making matters worse" At some point, everyone is going to be exposed. There is no way around that. You do realize that, yes?

Sorry, but I'll take freedom and liberty over gov't coddling and overreach every time. It's how and why this country was founded. Those of you who hate those concepts? There are plenty of other countries that will gladly "govern" all aspects of your life and no one is stopping you from leaving...

Bernie Mac

The country would be better off if all of the freedom-hating Democrats got on a boat to Cuba. And the world would be better off if the boat sank on the way.

Ken Kovach

Ok Doc, I should have said, "People aggravated by “the stay at home request” AND GOING TO HOBBY LOBBY TO SHOP, aren’t thinking past their own selfish wants to be free." BECAUSE HOBBY LOBBY DOES NOT SELL ANYTHING ESSENTIAL. You do realize the subject was shopping at Hobby Lobby?

Doc, you said; At some point, everyone is going to be exposed. There is no way around that. You do realize that, yes? YES Doc, I AGREE THAT EVERYONE WILL EVENTUALLY GET EXPOSED AND, I BELIEVE THE SOONER WE GET EXPOSED THE BETTER BECAUSE THE MUTATED VIRUS, NEXT TIME, WILL MOSTLIKELY BE WORSE. SO WHY DO WE HAVE STAY AT HOME ORDERS? ANSWER IS, so hospitals are not overwhelmed. And, our current administration was not prepared, because Trump and friends ignored the warning signs. FYI Obama led us through a pandemic without drama.

Doc, you said; Sorry, but I'll take freedom and liberty over gov't coddling and overreach every time. It's how and why this country was founded. BUT Doc, SOMETIMES WE ALL NEED TO MAKE SACRIFICES FOR THE COMMON GOOD.

Ali

Doc and Bernie are the same person. Not enough brain there for two.

Doc Samson

If only reality agreed with you...

https://theweek.com/articles/915446/should-grateful-good-news-georgia

https://www.city-journal.org/the-politics-of-fear

https://www.conservativereview.com/news/horowitz-cdc-confirms-remarkably-low-coronavirus-death-rate-media/

@Ali - I'll save you some time... bot. [wink]

Ali

Lol, Doc. Why don’t you just go on and quote from Candace Owens’ twitter feed or link to a Bill Mitchell video: they have about as much credibility as what you cite.

Bernie Mac

Ken, you have a big mouth. And why do you feel the need to yell so much? Could it be that very few read your disjointed diatribes? Whenever I see strings of UPPERCASE, I go right on by.

Ken Kovach

BERNIE MAC! Initially, I was surprised that you did not realize caps locks was the way I separated the comment from the RESPONSE. But then, I remembered that Trump tweets like a third grader and he uses caps to yell. Just goes to show how we think so differently.

And, I accept your apology about saying democrats should all drown.

Bernie Mac

Everyone knows that uppercase is the equivalent of yelling. And now you want to redefine it. Just another case of childish Democrats corrupting the language.

Bernie Mac

And BTW, I never apologized for what I wrote. I only apologized her hurting your ultra-sensitive delicate little juvenile feelings.

Bernie Mac

And another thing. I never said "democrats should all drown". That is a lie! When you have to lie to make a point, perhaps you have no point at all.

There is a pattern with some Democrats.

They will distort what you say until it no longer resembles what you said, and then argue with you about what you did not say.

This is dishonest. This debate tactic can probably be found in the lefty bible - Rules for Radicals.

Spock Here

Poor Bernie bot....back at ya: here is a pattern with most Trump cult members:

They will distort what you say until it no longer resembles what you said, and then argue with you about what you did not say. This is narcissistic gaslighting and dishonest. This debate tactic can probably be found in the cult bible - The Art of the Deal

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