One of the things that’s been most distressing while having to deal with a pandemic is also having to deal with the governmental overreach of people are feeling right now in some states.
In Michigan, you can’t buy seeds, paint, or infant car seats, but don’t worry, you can buy lottery tickets and besides, it’s snowing so it’s cool. In Raleigh, North Carolina, police consider protesting a non-essential activity (bye-bye, First Amendment if the Governor orders it) and in Florida, you’re not allowed to walk your dog after 9:00 p.m. because the virus might catch you at night.
Folks came out in force against the heavy hand of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer in Michigan in Lansing yesterday, protesting in force and over 200,000 people have even signed a petition to have her recalled.
But we have to say: For the worst clueless response to overreach, Governor Phil Murphy is right up there with what he told Tucker Carlson on his show last night.
Tucker questioned him about the report that people had been arrested for going to synagogue.
Tucker Carlson asks New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy where he got the authority to nullify the Bill of rights when he banned religious services in his state:
"I wasn't thinking of the Bill of Rights when we did this… The science says people have to stay away from each other." pic.twitter.com/DPQ5d2DFl2
— Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) April 16, 2020
From Washington Examiner:
“As I noted before, 15 congregants at a synagogue in New Jersey were arrested and charged for being in a synagogue together. Now, the Bill of Rights, as you well know, protects Americans’ right, enshrines their right, to practice their religion as they see fit and to congregate together, to assemble peacefully. By what authority did you nullify the Bill of Rights in issuing this order? How do you have the power to do that?” Carlson asked.
“That’s above my pay grade, Tucker,” Murphy responded, saying he “wasn’t thinking of the Bill of Rights when we did this.”
“Well, I can tell,” Tucker interjected.
You can say that again. Arresting people? Seriously?
Now, it can be problematic to meet in any groups and we’ve seen spreading reported from gathering for services. But to say that he wasn’t “thinking about the Bill of Rights” when he did this and “it’s above my pay grade” is exactly the problem. It’s exactly what the Governor is supposed to be considering, in order to have regard for constitutional rights. That’s what he’s sworn an allegiance to uphold. He doesn’t get to just not consider it. Your rights don’t go completely out the window in an emergency. It is his “pay grade” to consider, he’s simply ignoring that responsibility to consider it.
“Here’s the thing, we know we need to stay away from each other, number one. Number two, we do have broad authority within the state. And number three, we would never do that without coordinating, discussing, and hashing it out with the leaders, the variety of the leaders of the faith of New Jersey,” Murphy later said.
Thinking those leaders probably didn’t think arresting people in response was a great idea either.