Under the executive order, Biden is directing departments and agencies under his jurisdiction “to immediately take action to require people in federal buildings or on federal lands, on-duty or on-site federal employees, and on-site federal contractors to wear a mask and maintain physical distance,” according to the White House.
But the order also requires masks on various modes of public transportation, including trains, airplanes and intercity buses. And it’s that provision, attorneys who have challenged mask mandates in the past say, that could be the most vulnerable to a legal challenge.
Of course, the anti-maskers are going to challenge these new regulations. One venue is the courts but some think that opponents may not prevail in that venue.
At least one attorney who has headed a court case opposing mask mandates, said the language in Biden’s order appeared tightly written, perhaps in anticipation of legal challenges.
“In the summary I reviewed, I see evidence of careful thought and planning to anticipate challenges,” said Seldon Childers, a Florida attorney who has a pending case challenging mask mandates. ”I think they will probably prevail on having authority regulations.”
What is more likely to happen is people deliberately flouting the regulation and then getting violent when asked to mask up. One hopes that it does not get as far as in these situations
In the early morning hours of Halloween, three friends visiting the Sahara Theatre, a strip club in Anaheim, were kicked out of the location after they refused to wear a face covering. Then, instead of adhering to COVID-19 protocols so they could return, Edgar Nava-Ayala, 34, and Daniel Juvenal Ocampo, 22, and Juan Jose Acosta-Soto allegedly returned with AK-47 assault rifles.
Nava-Ayala allegedly fired 15 rounds at the strip club from a vehicle, hitting a customer, two employees, and wounding a fourth, unidentified person who refused medical attention according to the Anaheim Police Department. The trio then fled the scene via a nearby freeway.
While all the victims survived, one suffered a shattered left shoulder blade and another had to undergo surgery, according to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office.
Nava-Ayala is facing 82 years to life in state prison while Ocampo faces 21 years to life, according to the District Attorneys’ office.
Acosta-Soto was charged with three felony counts of assault with an assault weapon and one felony count of shooting into an occupied building. He faces a maximum of 17 years and four months in prison.
In August, three women assaulted a 17-year-old hostess at a Baton Rouge Chili after she tried to break up their party of 11 between two tables. In May, three people in Flint, Michigan were arrested and charged with killing a Family Dollar security guard after he asked the group to put on face masks, as was the state’s mandate at the time, before entering the store. That same month, a woman in Oklahoma City shot three McDonald’s employees after they told her the restaurant’s dining area was closed. All three workers survived their injuries.
The mind reels at people willing to go to such extremes over something as minor and commonsensical as wearing a damn mask. The blame has to be placed at the feet of Trump and the Republican leadership who have raised not wearing masks to the level of being a courageous and patriotic act in defense of freedom.