Leave it to California to compete with the likes of Michigan and Kentucky for the most restrictive coronavirus measures in America. While the Golden State is not yet restricting private travel between residences or forcing citizens to wear quarantine ankle bracelets, they’re getting there.
During a press conference on Wednesday night, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti controversially announced one of his most authoritarian measures yet to supposedly fight against the coronavirus pandemic. Garcetti said he authorized the Department of Water and Power (DWP) to shut down utilities of any home that the LAPD confirms is hosting parties. Utilities are to be cut within 48 hours of police confirmation.
This has to be a major Constitutional violation. How is it legal for anyone, whether they’re a local, state, or federal official, to restrict someone’s water and electricity because they hosted a party?
Garcetti addressed the legal question by responding that, if you’re hosting a gathering or party, “You’re breaking the law,” the mayor said. Describing the coronavirus situation in L.A. County, he said, “This is life and death.”
For one, his “law” or executive action to impose lockdowns, breaks constitutional law by violating our rights to privacy and liberty without due process.
His insufficient answer misses the point that shutting off water and power isn’t a proper response to breaking the law, it’s more like cruel and unusual punishment. When you commit a crime, you get fined or arrested. So, if he can’t find grounds to fine or arrest anyone, then these residents hosting gatherings in their homes should not be treated differently from any other law-abiding citizen.
Also, if this is a “life and death” situation as Garcetti describes, why are protestors exempt from this rule? L.A. residents can’t have a gathering in their home, but they can take to the streets by the thousands? BLM protestors can march, block freeways, riot, and have free reign, but no restrictions or legal action can be brought against them.
Maybe the most important point here that Garcetti must have forgotten in his quest for control is that the number one rule of preventing illness and virus transmission is washing your hands. How are L.A. residents going to slow the spread of COVID-19 if their water access is being shut off? Garcetti acts as if he is trying to spread the virus.
This move comes several months after his initial threat to shut off power for businesses and people who didn’t comply with the lockdowns that first started in late March. However, more than four months after his threat, he decides to follow through just as President Trump announces a national decline in positive cases.
Garcetti’s tyrannical actions are completely unconstitutional but unfortunately entirely predictable for California which has been overtaken by radical Leftists like Gavin Newsom. Last month, the state banned indoor worship, last week L.A. County officials threatened to arrest pastor John MacArthur for holding church service inside, now this week the county is going to implement power cuts to anyone hosting a gathering. This seems to be nothing more than the latest desperate attempt by power hungry politicians to control the people.