Houston Police Push Back Against Mandatory Mask Ordinance
Houston Police Push Back Against Mandatory Mask Ordinance
Houston police have a very big problem with the mandatory mask ordinance imposed upon Houston and Harris County residents.
First, let’s take a look at the ordinance itself. These are the requirements.
“Exceptions: when exercising, eating or drinking, alone and in a separate space, at home with roommates or family, or when doing so risks security, mental, or physical health
Takes effect Monday & lasts 30 days
Permitted garments: homemade mask, scarf, bandana or handkerchief
Not recommended: N-95 respirators/medical masks because first responders need them.
Essential businesses must provide face coverings/training to workers whose jobs require them to come into contact w/colleagues or the public.
Punishment for breaking rules = Fine up to $1,000 or up to 180 days in jail. Enforcement up to Harris County law enforcement agencies.”
Look at that last rule. A person could get fined $1,000 or hauled off to JAIL if caught not wearing a mask! How incredibly draconian and unConstitutional!! I get that no one wants to get sick. But this is going to damned far! How will this be enforced? By setting up a snitch hotline such as the one Bill de Blasio touted? Given that one went over as well as a fart in church, I’d say that’s a non-starter. Oh wait, I know. How about letting people write snitch emails? That worked so very well in St. Louis. NOT.
Never mind, let’s make the police department patrol around specifically looking for the mask miscreants. Well, once the Houston PD learned of the plan, they had a thing or two to say about that.
HPOU response to @LinaHidalgoTX draconian mask order: “Now we want to be very clear, HPOU believes everyone should be wearing a mask in public, in order to protect themselves from the virus and we are encouraging all of our officers to wear a mask. However, we draw the line…” pic.twitter.com/XbphfNYHii— Houston Police Officers' Union (@HPOUTX) April 22, 2020
Boy Howdy! That is…BLUNT. I commend the Houston PD for standing up to this draconian overreach. Seriously, by their statement it is obvious they have more to contend with than running around checking to make sure all are toeing the mask mandate line. Besides, threatening fines or JAIL to someone who doesn’t wear a mask? We live in a Constitutional Republic folks, not a dictatorship!
Judges have already had to issue smackdowns regarding governmental overreach into our 1st Amendment right to Freedom of Religion. It has gotten bad enough that the DOJ is looking into the situation. But now we find that local governments are threatening JAIL if their ordinances aren’t followed? Does Harris County REALLY want that kind of PR right now? Is Harris County ready to deal with the inevitable lawsuits if they mandate enforcement of this ordinance? Evidently so.
Congressman Dan Crenshaw caught wind of this ordinance.
Absolutely not.— Rep. Dan Crenshaw (@RepDanCrenshaw) April 22, 2020
I agree that guidelines for masks in confined spaces should be strongly promoted.
But 180 days in jail or $1,000 fine for not wearing a mask? That is draconian.
Don’t let commonsense guidelines lead us to government tyranny. https://t.co/aD1V1BUlja
That’s the key! STRONGLY PROMOTE the wearing of masks. Don’t make it mandatory and punishable by jail time because yes, that is indeed government tyranny.
Houston PD is not alone in pushing back against local and state government overreach. Washington State, which has been at the epicenter of all of this since February, is receiving major pushback from Snohomish County Sheriff Adam Fortney.
He makes it very clear that yes, this virus is serious. Yet he ALSO points out that the cherry picking of what jobs are and aren’t essential is leading to major economic hardship across his county. Government construction is ok, but residential and commercial construction isn’t? Even here in CO with a Democrat governor, not a single construction project of any kind was shut down.
Sheriff Fortney goes on to specifically state that he and the department have NOT carried out any enforcement regarding the stay-at-home order.
“As your Snohomish County Sheriff, yes I believe that preventing business owners to operate their businesses and provide for their families intrudes on our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I am greatly concerned for our small business owners and single-income families who have lost their primary source of income needed for survival
As your elected Sheriff I will always put your constitutional rights above politics or popular opinion. We have the right to peaceably assemble. We have the right to keep and bear arms. We have the right to attend church service of any denomination. The impacts of COVID 19 no longer warrant the suspension of our constitutional rights.”
Exactly so. Yet we are on the verge of falling off the cliff Constitutionally if we don’t push back against governmental overreach like this.
Houston is dealing rising crime rates, yet Judge Hidalgo expects them to run around looking for people who refuse to wear masks.
Everyone should be wearing a mask in public, I wear 1 everyday. But making not wearing 1 punishable by law, and asking our officers to enforce it, will do irreparable damage to our relationship with the community. We are already stretched too thin without having to enforce this. pic.twitter.com/BwxEJgHvkq— Joe Gamaldi (@JoeGamaldi) April 22, 2020
Again, people should be strongly encouraged to wear a mask in public, and many if not most, will choose to do of their own free will without being threatened with fines or jail time!
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Feature Photo Credit: Mask photo by Anrita1705 via Pixabay, cropped and modified
Time for some sanctuary counties to sprout across the nation.
One lesson of history is that governments (especially representative governments) cannot force people to do what a large majority (@ 70%) don’t want to do, or not do what they want to do. Even Stalin couldn’t stop Russia’s chronic drunkenness.
It’s kind of ironic that tyrannies soon become extraordinarily corrupt and lawless. Seems that the long term result of draconian punishments for minor offenses is not widespread fear for actions done, but a blase attitude towards laws and lawbreaking. If being innocent can get you a fiver, why not go along with everyone else and take bribes, shirk work, take what you can if nobody will find out, and so on?
This is an example of “two wrongs don’t make a right”. Bureaucrats should not make draconian unenforceable laws, and law enforcement should not pick-and-choose which laws they do not enforce (at least not announce these publicly).
I think it was Napoleon who wrote: “Do not prohibit what you cannot prevent.”
I predict that there will be a lot of people saying that mask wearing is a danger to their mental health. It’s such a broad category. I would think that many of us could truthfully say that being forced to obey a probably unconstitutional order would cause undue psychological stress.
And it’s a pain having to explain every time you go into a store that you have a medical condition. Some folks here in CT are good about it, but the idiot at my local Walmart kept interrupting me that it was the “law”, and it took me three tries to tell her that I have poorly controlled asthma which falls under the medical exclusion. Of course they also turned two handicapped spots into pharmacy pickup which is probably illegal. I will be contacting corporate on both issues.
I need to get out of this h*!!hole of a state.
The Houston PD understands that if people get sick enough of this that their snitch line will turn into an ambush arranger.
This is the Houston Police officers Union taking a stand, the men and women who will be on the ground actually carrying out enforcement of this nonsense. I don’t see anything from the Houston PD except a reminder that while they will be seeking voluntary compliance, people can still be fined for not having a mask, or cited for trespassing if you wander into a store without one and the manager presses the issue.
Police departments make it clear they will not investigate dozens of crimes on the books, adultery et al, due to manpower restrictions etc on a routine basis. Everyone knows that the police won’t enforce these crimes and the departments do nothing to dispel that notion. In this case however, they seem to be going out of their way to remind people that push comes to shove, they will.
It’s an interesting issue. The people who promulgate these rules have jobs in government so they can sit at home getting paid and having necessary items delivered. ACLU on this issue?: Crickets. They are all over releasing felons, and making sure abortions go off as planned though.
[…] out of doors to wear a mask and the disease is not successfully transmitted out of doors. The order comes with a fine up to $1,000 and 180 days in jail. Houston Police Union is strongly pushing back against the order, refusing to enforce it. While […]