Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer's expanded orders limiting the rights of Michiganders to move freely between personal residences and to provide for their own basic needs has gone too far, leading Citizens for Free Speech (CFFS) to demand her immediate resignation.
"All public and private gatherings of any size are prohibited," Whitmer declared on April 8, which effectively blocked Michigan residents from visiting immediate family members—with few exceptions—or even traveling from their primary homes to their own cottages in different locations. Curiously, the governor's order does not prohibit residents from traveling to locations outside the state.
"Governor Whitmer's extremist measures go far beyond trying to ensure public health in the face of a pandemic," said Patrick Wood, Executive Director of CFFS. "She has stripped Michigan residents of their Constitutional rights, and even worse, she has now taken away their basic human rights."
Whitmer's orders, which went into effect over the weekend, place nurseries and garden centers on the list of non-essential businesses, precluding residents from buying seeds before planting season begins.
"How can the leader of a free state deny her own constituents the right to grow their own food?" asked Wood. "Hundreds of thousands of citizens will not be able to grow vegetable gardens because the governor has apparently deemed tending to crops in an open field to be a violation of new social-distancing norms. Yet the state lottery remains open for business?"
Governor Whitmer's heavy-handed order spares merchants selling lottery tickets from the arbitrary "non-essential business" label affixed to stores that don't generate millions for the state government.
CFFS has announced support for protests planned at the Michigan state capitol this week, as state residents fight for the restoration of their liberties. However, it is quite unlikely, according to Wood, that the unconstitutional orders will be lifted without a change in occupancy of the governor's mansion.
"Governor Whitmer has proven herself to be completely incapable of balancing statewide health initiatives with her constituents' rights to assemble peaceably, even on their own property," Wood declared, "or to even to provide for their own welfare by growing food. Even during a time when leaders in multiple states have limited the rights of their citizens, Whitmer's radical orders are appalling and unacceptable."
Citizens for Free Speech is a national non-profit organization that defends and supports the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, including free speech, the right to assemble peaceably and the right to the free exercise of religion.