American Businesses Are Rebelling Against Coronavirus Closures

AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

 

It appears that at least some Americans are fed up with business closures amid the Wuhan virus pandemic. As several states are preparing for a gradual reopening of their economies, it seems that some are unwilling to wait.

Eliot Rabin, a New York City businessman owns a boutique in Upper East Side is defying the shutdown orders and opening his store. “I’m opening my doors come hell or high water,” he told The New York Post. His store sells high-end men’s and boys apparel. In explaining why he is refusing to comply with the order, he asked, “Why is a liquor store essential and I’m not?”

While many of the New Yorkers who can afford to shop at his store have left the city, he insists that he is there to provide “emotional essential support” for those who remained. He also joked that he was providing “internal vaccinations: Chivas Regal, Kentucky bourbon – have a nip and you’ll feel better.”

But on a more serious note, The Post reports that this is the only way to safeguard his company as he has not yet received any of the funds made available by the government. “We’ve applied for every loan, every break … to no avail. We got bubkes.”

Shelley Luther owns a salon in Texas, which remains under lockdown orders but is going to begin reopening its economy this coming week. She told NBC 5 Dallas that she is disregarding the shutdown order and opening her salon.

Luther explained that she received a “cease and desist” letter from County Judge Clay Jenkin’s office on Friday afternoon shortly after she opened her doors. “We have the constitutional right to be able to work to provide for our families, to pay our mortgages, and I don’t feel it’s right to close us down for this long period of time,” she said.

The salon owner apparently caused quite a stir in her town. After news of the cease and desist order spread, a crowd of people gathered outside Luther’s business to show solidarity. Local police were on the scene to provide crowd control. “I understand that you guys have a job to do,” Luther said to the officers. “I don’t fault you for that. We appreciate everything. We’re on your side, obviously. You guys do a great job, and we’re going to comply and do everything you want us to do, except to close.”

While the Lone Star State is easing some of its restrictions, some measures are still in place at the county level that prohibit hair and nail salons from doing business. But for Luther, this is a matter of having a place to live or ending up on the street. “I’m behind on my mortgage,” she said in an interview with Inside Edition. “I know a lot of my stylists haven’t paid their mortgage. It’s either come in and make money to be able to feed your family or stay home and freak out,” she asserted.

It’s not just business owners who are flouting COVID-19 regulations. The mayor of Grant, a New Mexico town announced that he will allow small businesses to reopen this week despite the statewide shutdown orders.

Mayor Martin Hicks stated that businesses will have permission to open on Monday. He has ordered the local police force to prohibit state law enforcement from issuing citations for businesses that open their doors. “The governor is killing us. She’s totally killing us,” Hicks said. “So we have no choice. So right now, we are reopening. Let State Police come down here.”

The mayor made this decision after 81 local businesses signed a petition calling for the reopening of the city. New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham previously indicated that she is forming a group of mayors who will collaborate with the state government to begin commerce statewide. However, she extended the shelter-in-place orders and other coronavirus restrictions until May 15.

It appears that America is going to get back to work one way or another. Progressives politicians seem to be intent on fighting the inevitable. Despite their continue fearmongering and increasing authoritarianism, Americans are pushing back.

 

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