Members of the Williamson County-based Tennessee Stands said rulings coming down from U.S. District Courts regarding what they call unlawful mandates, particularly those coming from Tennessee, prove “that reasoning has lost and politics wins the day.”
Federal courts have cited the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in saying that Tennessee Governor Bill Lee’s Executive Order 84 that gives parents the right to opt out of school mask mandates is unlawful. The courts say the mandate prevents schools from providing reasonable accommodations to students with disabilities.
Tennessee Stands spokesman Gary Humble elaborated on his website this past weekend.
“The most egregious of these three court rulings, in my opinion, is the court order by U.S. District Judge Ronnie Greer of Greeneville, TN, which states that the Knox County School Board must reenact its mask requirement in local schools,” Humble said.
Greer not only enjoined a governor’s executive order but also “commandeered a locally-elected policymaking body,” Humble said.
“This to me is an egregious overreach from the federal bench. Whether or not he was simply interpreting federal law is not the point. The power to interpret federal law does not now give the black robes the powers to create or enact law. Further, for a federal judge to reach down through the barrier of the state and suppose he can force an elected body to create policy is outrageous,” Humble said.
“But let us move on to the interpretation of the ADA itself, for it is quite dangerous and if promulgated throughout the rest of society could be life-changing for everyone. This judge has interpreted the ADA in such a way that moves beyond the schools and into every sector of society without the need for an emergency to exist and regardless of the contagion, communicable disease, or health issue at hand. The burden is no longer on the place of public accommodation to provide a reasonable accommodation to the disabled, but now on every individual, in this case, by complying with a mask mandate.”
Humble said earlier this month that members of the Tennessee General Assembly should hold a special session “to address a host of issues currently plaguing our state,” particularly regarding forced vaccination policies.
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