Commentary: Constitution-Respecting Sheriffs Refuse to Enforce Lockdowns

Across the country governors, county commissioners and executives, and city and town officials have announced “lockdowns” or stay-at-home orders of dubious constitutional validity. The result of these orders is the bizarre situation in which jails are being emptied of criminals while individuals engaged in their ordinary business at appropriate social distance have been arrested for the crime of being outside their home.

One of the most high-profile examples of this inverted constitutional order happened in California, where a paddle boarder was arrested near the Malibu Pier for ignoring orders from lifeguards to get out of the water. CBS News Los Angeles reports the unidentified man spent 30 to 40 minutes paddling in the ocean waters off Malibu Beach after refusing to heed orders from L.A. County lifeguards to go ashore. LASD Harbor Patrol brought in a boat, at which point the paddleboarder voluntarily swam in and was taken into custody.

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Whitmer Orders ‘Stay Home, Stay Safe’ Lockdown for Three Weeks

Michigan residents have been ordered to stay inside their homes as part of a “Stay Home, Stay Safe” executive order, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced on Monday.

The order, effective at 12:01 a.m. on March 24, prohibits people leaving their home unless they are engaged in an outdoor activity, performing necessary tasks like going to a hospital or grocery store, or are part of an industry deemed essential. The lockdown will be in place for three weeks.

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Governor Bill Lee Orders Bars And Restaurants to Close

Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee issued an executive action Sunday ordering the closure of bars, restaurants, and other places of public accommodation in response to the coronavirus pandemic.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has created both an economic and a health crisis and our response must continue to address both aspects,” Lee said in a statement. “Our goal is to keep the public, especially vulnerable populations, safe while doing everything possible to keep Tennesseans in a financially stable position.”

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