Protesters throughout France have shown up for rallies against a controversial draft law on public safety, under which filming a police officer on duty may result in a hefty fine. Critics say it fosters impunity for misconduct.
The protests were organized in many large French cities, including Paris, Marseilles, Lyon, Brest and Nice, with thousands participating despite Covid-19 concerns. The main event is happening in the Place de la République in the capital.
The demonstrators are voicing their anger over a draft law on public security, which was approved by the lower chamber of the parliament this week. Article 24 of the bill bans filming of police officers on duty with an intention to harm them. Lawmakers who voted for the bill are among the officials who were shamed by the protesters.
ALBANY, N.Y. — New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is downplaying the significance of a Supreme Court decision blocking him enforcing stringent attendance limits on religious institutions in Covid hot spots.
“That Supreme Court ruling on the religious gatherings is more illustrative of the Supreme Court than anything else,” Cuomo said on a Thanksgiving morning briefing call. “It’s irrelevant from any practical impact.”
The Wednesday night decision came after a challenge by Catholic and Jewish organizations in Brooklyn neighborhoods that the governor placed in a “red zone” earlier this fall. Under that classification, congregations of more than 10 people at a time were prohibited.
A 5-4 majority found that the limitation resulted in “disparate treatment,” as religious institutions were subjected to more stringent regulations than places like liquor stores and bike shops. Chief Justice John Roberts voted with the minority.
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Covid-19 has unleashed a pandemic of restrictive measures on the population.
Lockdowns and mask mandates are becoming widespread. Libertarians have been vociferously denouncing covid-19 containment strategies as draconian. Evolutionary psychologists, however, argue that reactions in favor of government restrictions are the norm in environments where the public fears contamination. According to the parasitic stress theory popularized by Randy Thornhill and Corey Fincher, societies with a high prevalence of diseases are more supportive of authoritarian policies. This is unsurprising because to prevent transmissions experts often recommend limiting movement. Due to fear, citizens would have a vested interest in promoting policies claiming to lower infections. Likewise, the aversion to contracting covid-19 has forced many to advocate hysterical policies. For anthropologists interested in analyzing the parasitic stress theory, covid-19 is a perfect case study.
Murray, Schaller, and Suedfeld (2013) in their discussion of the relationship between pathogens and authoritarianism elucidate the importance of disease control mechanisms in germ-rich societies. “Because many disease-causing parasites are invisible, and their actions mysterious, disease control has historically depended substantially on adherence to ritualized behavioral practices that reduced infection risk. Individuals who openly dissented from, or simply failed to conform to, these behavioral traditions, therefore, posed a health threat to self and others.” Unfortunately, as covid-19 has demonstrated, people are willing to subject themselves to rituals even if they have no discernible impact on deterring transmissions. One must appear to be complying with the crowd or face expulsion. Humans are emotional creatures, and hence they give primacy to symbolic gestures. For example, recently researchers noted that “no direct evidence indicates that public mask wearing protects either the wearer or others.” Yet despite the dearth of evidence in favor of wearing masks, the researchers nevertheless advocated their use in the name of group solidarity: “Given the severity of this pandemic and the difficulty of control…we suggest appealing to altruism and the need to protect others.”
Besides Maryland Governor Larry Hogan (R) telling inhabitants of the Mid-Atlantic state this week that they have ‘no constitutional right‘ to refuse wearing a mask during the COVID-19 pandemic, the governor has also dispatched “compliance units” to enforce coronavirus safety measures at businesses, including bars and restaurants.
Starting at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Maryland State Police and local officials will combine forces in “high-visibility compliance units” to monitor capacity levels, mask-wearing, and social distancing at bars and restaurants, reported WBAL TV.
For the first time since June, the state recorded 32 new virus-related deaths in a single day – also reporting 4,325 new cases – adding to total cases of more than 185,000. The positivity rate of 6.6%, makes it a red zone state.
Thousands of people in 16 California cities took to the streets on Saturday to protest Gov. Gavin Newsom’s curfew order requiring people to stay at home after 10 p.m. Carrying Trump/Pence flags and “Open up California” banners, the crowds began to gather at 10:01 p.m., including in Huntington Beach and San Clemente.
“Governor Newsom’s sweeping edicts by moving 95 percent of California to purple tier and a curfew is an abuse of power,” Syndie Ly, who helped organize the protest and was on the ground in San Clemente, told Breitbart News. “We are all responsible adults so we can make our individual choices.”
“This movement is about us rising up for our freedom and against Governor Newsom’s overreaching edicts,” Ly said.
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After weeks of telling New Yorkers to stay home for Thanksgiving and to not hold family dinners with non-household members out of fears of spreading the COVID-19 China coronavirus and mandating a ten-person limit, the Emmy award winning Governor Andrew Cuomo is having his elderly mother and two of his daughters for Thanksgiving dinner in Albany. (UPDATE at end.)
Cuomo mentioned his plans in an interview with the WAMC public radio network radio Monday afternoon that was reported on by local reporters and by the Daily Beast:
“It’s about life and death,” Cuomo said, before offering a story about his daughter crying to him on the phone about now having Thanksgiving together. “We are in a place now with bad synergy.”
Hours later, during an interview on WAMC, Cuomo admitted he was still having an in-person Thanksgiving despite his pleas for New Yorkers to stay home, stating he was spending the holiday with his 89-year old mother and two daughters in Albany.
the Gateway Pundit
A British Supreme Court judge has slammed the UK government as ‘control freaks’ for attempting to control people’s lives under the guise of COVID, and labeled it “morally and constitutionally indefensible” to define what freedoms the public should and shouldn’t have.
In an op-ed published Sunday, Lord Sumption noted that the “debate about whether to let us have a family Christmas perfectly sums up what is wrong with this Government’s handling” of the crisis.
Sumption wrote that there are “many different answers to the dilemmas of a Covid Christmas”, yet the crux of the matter is “whether we should be allowed to make the choice for ourselves, instead of having it imposed on us by law.”
“But for the Jacobins of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) and the control freaks in the Department of Health, theirs is the only answer,” Sumption urged.
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Britons are set to be given Covid ‘freedom passes’ as long as they test negative for the virus twice in a week, it has been suggested.
The details of the scheme are still being ironed out by officials in Whitehall, who hope it will allow the country to get back to normal next year.
To earn the freedom pass, people will need to be tested regularly and, provided the results come back negative, they will then be given a letter, card or document they can show to people as they move around.
The certificate would be stored on a phone, according to sources, and would allow people to live a relatively normal life until the government’s vaccination programme gets up to the speed.
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In the aftermath of getting caught red-handed violating his own travel and gathering restrictions, California Governor Gavin Newsom has exempted an entire industry’s workforce from those restrictions citing them as “essential workers.” But are they, really?
Newsom was recently forced to eat crow after attending a friend and political adviser’s 50th birthday party at a swank, upscale Napa County restaurant for a $400 a plate dinner. Newsom apologized after being publicly humiliated by the San Francisco Chronicle.
Astoundingly, Newsom then refused to intervene when many in his own State Legislature opted to attend a summit produced by a San Diego firm that violated the travel ban in place to host the summit in Maui, Hawaii.
Newsom has issued a new round of COVID-related restrictions, including a stay-at-home order, a curfew, limiting the size of private venue gatherings, and travel bans.