The following editorial is written by a retired Chief of Police and current staff writer for Law Enforcement Today.
USA- We have reported numerous times on the draconian, arbitrary, and power-hungry executive orders issued by governors and mayors since the onset of this long national nightmare, the COVID-19 pandemic, since March.
The arbitrary and capricious nature of these orders, none of them based on “science,” usually involving continuously moving goalposts, has many Americans frustrated.
The latest outrage is the desire of mayors and governors to “cancel” Thanksgiving. How sad and ironic that in the same year we celebrate the 400th anniversary of Pilgrims landing at Plymouth, Massachusetts, out of control bureaucrats have decided they will dictate how Americans can celebrate a holiday where we are supposed to give thanks.
What makes it worse is the utter contempt these politicians have for their constituents. While they sit in their ivory towers, preaching to the rest of us of the “sacrifices” we are duty bound to make in order to protect our fellow citizens, they go out and violate the very orders they impose.
The latest example of course came from California Gov. Gavin Newsom, where some of the strictest coronavirus executive orders have been issued. Newsom was caught red-handed at an exclusive restaurant, violating at least 3-4 of his own executive orders.
When he was caught, he acted like the child caught with their hands in the cookie jar…it wasn’t his fault. He then offered a weak apology. It was about as sincere as a Hillary Clinton concession speech.
I served in law enforcement for nearly 32 years, with 18 of those years being in the capacity of a supervisor. When I was promoted to sergeant, a friend of mine, promoted to lieutenant at the same time told me something I never forgot. Never, ever forget where you came from and never ask someone to do something which you wouldn’t do yourself. I always operated that way.
In light of these most recent restrictions on Thanksgiving, and the apparent expectation that law enforcement authorities would enforce these ridiculous restrictions, got me to thinking. What would I do if I was still on the job and I was expected to have my officers enforce these absurd orders?
I was heartened to see numerous police officials stand up and say, publicly, that they wouldn’t enforce the orders. As a former chief of police, I agree with those sentiments 100%. There is absolutely no way I would have my officers enforce these orders. Even at the risk of losing my job. Because integrity, moral courage, and the belief in one’s convictions are the most important attributes in law enforcement.
Let’s look at what we as Americans have been told to do so far since March. Initially we were told that this virus was no worse than the flu and that we should live our lives. At around the same time, we were told that masks do not work.
That was followed up by what was initially a 14-day shutdown to “flatten the curve.” In other words, make sure that our hospital facilities wouldn’t be overcome. Grudgingly, a majority of Americans went along with that.
When that shutdown didn’t flatten anything except the bottom line of small businesses, we were then told that we would have to shut everything down, except for essential businesses.
What were essential businesses? As you would expect, grocery stores and gas stations were considered essential. Schools, churches, restaurants, gyms, bars, and other random businesses or organizations were not. Liquor stores? Essential because, well, they sell lottery tickets. And for state finances, we need to make sure that they get their cut of lottery sales, as well as the tax on booze.
Do you want to join our private family of first responders and supporters? Get unprecedented access to some of the most powerful stories that the media refuses to show you. Proceeds get reinvested into having active, retired and wounded officers, their families and supporters tell more of these stories. Click to check it out.
When questioned about liquor stores, we were told it was a “public health” issue. Because, well, alcoholics suffer withdrawal due to not being able to get blitzed. Have health problems or need procedures such as colonoscopy, emergency dental work or procedures along those lines? Sorry, no dice.
So, as winter turned to spring and spring to summer, a number of businesses remained closed. The mayor of New York sent the NYPD into Jewish neighborhoods to target Hasidic Jews conducting funerals. However, if you wanted to block highways, do some early Christmas looting, or assault police officers, that was fine. No “super spreader” events there. That was only restricted to Trump rallies or protests where people were protesting the draconian lockdowns, which were eviscerating businesses and ruining people financially.
We have already seen Memorial Day, 4th of July, and Halloween “canceled.” Graduation parties canceled, weddings postponed, vacations put off for another day…or year. Now, the COVID mafia is coming after Thanksgiving, and soon to follow [predicting it now] Christmas.
Out of all the holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas are the most family centric. This is when you get together to give thanks for all you have.
In a year such as this one, being thankful for being able to maintain your health is probably one of the things most Americans would be grateful for. If you own a business in the city and it wasn’t burned to the ground or looted weekly, you are likely thankful for that.
I guarantee you this; we could probably count the number of cops on one hand in the country who would be excited about going to someone’s house on Thanksgiving and citing them for having eight people in attendance instead of six.
Or, in the case of totalitarian states such as Pennsylvania, if someone in the home wasn’t wearing a mask, which, if they work and an estimated 90% of Americans wear them, why are we seeing a spike in cases? Food for thought.
Unfortunately, we have seen police in some areas engage in enforcing what appear to be in many cases unconstitutional orders. There was one viral case where a woman was arrested at an outdoor event for not wearing a mask and was actually tased.
A man who was windsurfing off the coast in California by himself was arrested for violating…something. There have been a number of cases unfortunately where cops have followed these ridiculous, random directives that, in many cases, are based on nothing more than the ego of the government official issuing them.
The most compelling reason, in my mind, for cops to disregard these government mandates on their citizens is the contempt with which police officers and law enforcement have been held since the George Floyd incident.
Isn’t it ironic that police have been roundly criticized for being “stormtroopers,” “Nazis” and “Gestapo” by many in the political class, yet these same people want to use police in exactly that capacity to be COVID Cops?
Americans have been told repeatedly that we need to “follow the science.” So, if that’s truly the case, where is the science that explains why masks don’t appear to work? Where is the science that says six feet is a safe distance, but five feet is not? How about the science that says you can only have six people at your home for Thanksgiving, but not seven or eight?
Where is the science that says a school cannot be opened when school-aged children have over a 99.97% chance of surviving COVID, if they get it in the first place? How about the science that says COVID-19 is such a smart virus that it only attacks between 10pm and 5am? And it only attacks Trump supporters at a rally, but not Biden supporters celebrating an alleged election victory?
So, while governors such as Newsom, Cuomo, Lamont, Whitmer, Brown and others (an overwhelming majority Democrats) issue these ridiculous executive orders, it is the police and sheriffs who are tasked with enforcing them. Who do you think people lash out at and who are the “bad guys” when law enforcement officers are put in the position of acting as COVID police? Exactly, the cops.
I would venture to guess that if most of the cops I know get dispatched to a call on Thanksgiving for “felony failure to social distance around a turkey,” most of them will take a long, slow drive by the scofflaws’ home, maybe glance in the other direction, and radio back, “Clear…unfounded.” That is exactly what I would do.
Want to make sure you never miss a story from Law Enforcement Today? With so much “stuff” happening in the world on social media, it’s easy for things to get lost.
Make sure you click “following” and then click “see first” so you don’t miss a thing! (See image below.) Thanks for being a part of the LET family!