Numerous demonstrations of civil disobedience have have sprung up in cities across the country as Americans lose patience with their state’s stay-at-home orders. For the most part, protesters have been allowed to demonstrate unhindered, but in Raleigh, North Carolina, Tuesday, local authorities shut down a libertarian group’s protest, and one woman was arrested.
About 100 people gathered outside the state assembly on Tuesday to protest the statewide stay-at-home order issued by Gov. Roy Cooper to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
“We continue to see the spread of the virus accelerate through North Carolina but at a much slower pace because people are following the executive orders on social distancing,” he said on Monday. “These models show consistently that our executive orders work and that wholesale lifting of those orders would be a catastrophe.”
NEW: At least one person now under arrest by @raleighpolice for refusing to leave #ReopenNC demonstration outside @ncleg. At its height, there were probably 100+ people at the tailgate-style rally. @ABC11_WTVD @ABC @ABCPolitics #coronavirusNC #StayAtHome #abc11 pic.twitter.com/so9ZIzzqpY
— Jonah Kaplan (@KaplanABC11) April 14, 2020
In Michigan, thousands of fed-up residents descended on the State Capital in Lansing, Wednesday, to protest Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s “Stay Home-Stay Safe” executive orders, claiming they’ve had “enough of Lansing’s erratic, unilateral orders that threaten Michiganders’ economic existence.”
The protest, dubbed “Operation Gridlock,” was organized by the Michigan Conservative Coalition (MCC).
More than an hour before the “Operation Gridlock” rally, trucks bedecked in flags, pulling boat trailers, sporting hand painted messages on their roofs have gathered around the state Capitol.
A decent amount of protesters are on foot as well. pic.twitter.com/I9lEfITahU
— Beth LeBlanc (@DNBethLeBlanc) April 15, 2020
“Michigan’s typical small business owners obey laws, but they may not notice the progressive agenda being pushed by our radical leftist Governor Whitmer,” said Rosanne Ponkowski, President of MCC. “Dope shops are open, while cigar shops are closed.”
Most of the protesters planned to surround the Capitol building while staying inside their vehicles, according to WLNS.com.
Others protested outside, carrying signs with anti-lockdown messages, including: “Freedom Trumps Safety and Communism,” “Stop Open Tyranny Michigan!,” “Even Pharaoh freed slaves during a plague,” and “Trump, Lock Up The Nazi Woman From Michigan.”
Thousands of people from all over Michigan are converging on our state Capitol today to protest the governor’s restrictive “Stay Home” order and get their voices, and car horns, heard. #OperationGridlock pic.twitter.com/bgjH4wKCUQ
— MI House Republicans (@MI_Republicans) April 15, 2020
“We can get this rally done and stay within the social distancing guidelines,” said Marian Sheridan, an MCC co-founder. “Citizens are frankly tired of being treated like babies. As adults, we now know what needs to be done to stay safe. We also believe the liberal attack on the economy is becoming a serious threat right now. Join us in Lansing. We need to stop the madness and have a plan to re-open Michigan’s economy before it is too late.”
— Barrett Tryon (@btreports) April 15, 2020
— Malachi Barrett (@PolarBarrett) April 15, 2020
At least 620,000 Americans have been infected with the coronavirus contagion according to the latest estimates, and over 27,000 have died.
However, new evidence suggests that the coronavirus infection is much more widespread than the experts initially thought, meaning the virus is much less deadly than originally believed.
Americans are becoming increasingly concerned that the draconian measures taken to slow the spread of the disease are doing more harm than good.
In Ohio, folks have been showing up at Gov. Mike DeWine’s daily COVID-19 press briefings outside of the Statehouse in Columbus to protest statewide shutdowns. Their signs read “Quarantine worse than virus,” and “Social distancing or social conditioning. We do not consent.”
"We're not afraid of any virus": Crowds gathered outside Ohio's statehouse yesterday to protest Ohio's orders to stay home https://t.co/44OMvKsEDe
— Cleveland Scene (@ClevelandScene) April 14, 2020
One protestor, a Cleveland-area nurse named Jessica who was recently let go from her outpatient job because she says there weren’t enough people coming in, explains that she came down to show her kids how important their freedoms are and explains “we’re not afraid of any viruses.”
Another interviewee from Findlay named Brittany traveled to the protest with her 19-month old baby, noting that she doesn’t believe the shutdown is within the scope of Gov. DeWine’s power.
Even in Wyoming, where there are less than 300 confirmed cases, a small group of protesters gathered in a park in Casper last week to protest the state-mandated social distancing restrictions.
President Trump said at his press briefing Tuesday that he believes some states will be able to lift the restrictions before the end of April.
“I will be speaking to all 50 governors very shortly,” Trump said, “And I will then be authorizing each individual governor of each individual state to implement a reopening and a very powerful reopening plan of their state at a time and in a manner as most appropriate.”
The president stressed that for some states, the change is coming soon.
“The day will be very close because certain states as you know are in a much different condition and are in a much different place than other states. It’s going to be very very close. Maybe even before the date of May 1st,” he said.
"We're very close to completing a plan to open our country." pic.twitter.com/xnV4XxwnjL
— The White House (@WhiteHouse) April 13, 2020