What are the current best options in dealing with the flood of employer mandates? Lawsuit? Quit? Exemptions? Join me for a discussion / webinar with Kentucky Attorney Chris Wiest and Tennessee Attorney Andy Fox. Live at 5:30 p.m. ET
Here’s a sample religious exemption letter courtesy of Chris Wiest, as discussed in the video. It has some Kentucky-specific language in it, but you get the idea:
Do you have to be a journalist to have First Amendment protections to film in public? Is there a right to record police or other government officials in public? Let me tell you what the federal courts have said…..
To record what there is for the eye to see, or the ear to hear, corroborates or lays aside subjective impressions for objective facts. Hence to record is to see and hear more accurately. Recordings also facilitate discussion because of the ease in which they can be widely distributed via different forms of media. Accordingly, recording police activity in public falls squarely within the First Amendment right of access to information. As no doubt the press has this right, so does the public. See PG Publ’g. Co. v. Aichele, 705 F.3d 91, 99 (3d Cir. 2013); Branzburg v. Hayes, 408 U.S. 665, 684, 92 S.Ct. 2646, 33 L.Ed.2d 626 (1972) (quoting Fields v. City of Phila., 862 F.3d 353, 359 (3rd Cir. 2017)).
Under the First Amendment’s right of access to information the public has the commensurate right to record—photograph, film, or audio record—police officers conducting official police activity in public areas. Fields v. City of Phila., 862 F.3d 353, 360 (3rd Cir. 2017) (“The First Amendment protects actual photos, videos, and recordings, and for this protection to have meaning the Amendment must also protect the act of creating that material.” (citation omitted)); See also ACLU v. Alvarez, 679 F.3d 583, 599–600 (7th Cir.), cert. denied, ––– U.S. ––––, 133 S.Ct. 651, 184 L.Ed.2d 459 (2012) (holding that an Illinois eavesdropping statute did not protect police officers from a civilian openly recording them with a cell phone); Turner v. Lieutenant Driver, 848 F.3d 678, 689 (5th Cir. 2017) (“[T]he First Amendment protects the act of making film, as there is no fixed First Amendment line between the act of creating speech and the speech itself.” (quotation omitted); W. Watersheds Project v. Michael, 869 F.3d 1189 (10th Cir. 2017) (agreeing with several sister circuits that recording the conduct of officials in general is protected First Amendment speech); Glik v. Cunniffe, 655 F.3d 78, 79 (1st Cir.2011) (holding there is an “unambiguous[ ]” constitutionally protected right to videotape police carrying out their duties in public); Smith v. Cumming, 212 F.3d 1332, 1333 (11th Cir.2000) (finding plaintiffs “had a First Amendment right, subject to reasonable time, manner and place restrictions, to photograph or videotape police conduct”); Fordyce v. City of Seattle, 55 F.3d 436, 439 (9th Cir.1995) (recognizing plaintiff’s videotaping of police officers as a “First Amendment right to film matters of public interest”).
Furthermore, there can be no doubt that the public has the right to record police officers and government officials from the vantage point of standing on their own private property – and indeed, standing in their own front yard, or within their home.
Can the recordings then be seized by police?
Recently, the Fourth Circuit observed in the context of a claim of seizure of cell phone video footage by law enforcement, that we live “[i]n an era in which cell phones are increasingly used to capture much of what happens in daily life” and that such recordings are protected from seizure by law enforcement under the Fourth Amendment. Hupp v. State Trooper Seth Cook, 931 F.3d 307, 329 (4th Cir. 2019).
But, keep in mind, they could still be subject to seizure without a warrant under the exigent circumstances doctrine…..
Remember my video with Kentucky Lawyer Chris Wiest about his excessive force lawsuit involving the Kentucky State Police back in March? One of the police officers involved was fired and charged with perjury after he was caught lying in the deposition in Chris’ civil lawsuit.
A former Kentucky State trooper has been criminally charged with perjury after denying under oath that he beat a man with a flashlight in April 2020.
Thomas Czartorski was named in a lawsuit alleging troopers used excessive force against Alex Hornback of Shepherdsville while executing a bench warrant. The lawsuit also alleged that Hornback’s parents recorded the officers beating him, and that a trooper deleted the footage. But a home security video captured the incident. A lieutenant with the Kentucky State Police accused Czartorski in a complaint filed Thursday of lying during a January deposition when he said he didn’t use any force during the arrest. Czartorski turned himself in Friday afternoon at the courthouse on a felony charge of first-degree perjury, according to his attorney, Josh Schneider. The charge carries a penalty of one to five years in prison.
Join me at 7pm Live – The SCOTUS issued an opinion today protecting the sanctity of the Fourth Amendment protections of the home, which also served as an anti-red-flag ruling, restricting the police from performing warrantless searches of homes to seize firearms.
This is just in time for recent updates on two of our search and seizure cases with the same or similar issues: the Putnam County drug task force search case and the WV Family Court Judge Search case.
Just today the WV Governor signed a bill making WV a Second Amendment sanctuary of sorts from the federal government. There’s a lot of things going on in the world of federal gun control efforts at the moment. The GOA – Gun Owners of America is neck deep in fighting back against it. With me tonight is Luis Valdes, the Florida Director of the GOA, a well known Second Amendment advocate to discuss what’s going on.
Is there a constitutional right to be a parent? Join my live discussion with Tennessee Divorce Attorney Andy Fox about some of the child custody shenanigans that go on, as well as the constitutional rights to be a parent, and other things. #ChildCustody #FamilyCourt #DivorceAttorney Join us live at 6:30 pm ET on Freedom is Scary – Episode No. 60.
I (The Civil Rights Lawyer), as someone who practices in the area of #ExcessiveForce #CivilRightsLitigation, give my analysis on the #ChauvinVerdict from yesterday. I’ll take you through the actual jury instructions to explain what the jury decided. And also what they did not decide.
Here’s the recent study data I discuss in the video. Polling data established that the media and irresponsible politicians and social justice warriors have majorly skewed public perception on so-called systematic racism in police shootings. Here’s the data to review for yourself:
So, the respondents, after being asked whether they identify as liberal or conservative, were asked,“If you had to guess, how many unarmed Black men were killed by police in 2019?” Over 22% of people identifying themselves as “very liberal” responded that they believed 10,000 or more unarmed black men were killed by police in 2019. Even 13% of people identifying themselves as “conservative” placed the number at 10,000 or more. Over 40% of conservatives thought the number was at least 100 or more.
In reality, the number is actually between 13 and 27 unarmed black men who were killed by police in 2019.
The Washington Post has created a database of every known deadly police shooting in America since 2015. As of April 14, 2021, 6,211 people have been shot and killed by law enforcement officers. 46% of them—2,883 to be exact—were white, while 24% (1,496 total) were black. Just 6% were unarmed.
One of the most pernicious myths about police shootings is that officers shoot unarmed black men at an alarming rate, when in fact just 2% of the people who were killed by an officer were unarmed and black. Since the beginning of 2015, law enforcement officers across the country have actually killed 33 more unarmed white people than unarmed black people.
The statistics do show that black people are statistically more likely, per capita, to be shot and killed by police. How is this explained? The assumption used by the media and politicians is some sort of implicit or systematic racism, bias or prejudice. But that’s ignoring all other statistics.
Engage in more criminal activity and you have more interactions with police. More interactions with police equals more shootings, both justified and unjustified.
For instance, although blacks comprise just 13% of the US population, they accounted for 53% of the murder and non-negligent manslaughter arrests in 2018 (the most recent year for which FBI crime data is available), 54% of all robbery arrests, and 37% of all violent crime arrests. Whites, on the other hand, comprise 76% of the population but made up just 44% of the murder and non-negligent manslaughter, 43% of the robbery, and 59% of the total violent crime arrests.
In Milwaukee, for instance, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s homicide tracker has recorded 890 total murders in the city since the beginning of 2015. A staggering 79% of the victims are black. In 2021, that percentage has jumped to 91%, as 31 of the 34 people killed in Milwaukee as of this writing were black.
The unfortunate reality is that just as blacks are statistically far more likely to be the victims of homicide or other violent crimes, they are also statistically more likely to commit violent crimes that would bring them into conflict with a law enforcement officer with his or her gun drawn.
On Friday we filed a lawsuit against Putnam County and the individual members of their “SEU” – Special Enforcement Unit – for an illegal search of a family’s residence in Putnam County, West Virginia in April of 2019. These were the same guys from the Dustin Elswick video. Here’s the full complaint (sorry it was omitted earlier, but NOW here it is):
Then this morning we received motions to dismiss from the defendants in the Family Court Judge Search case. Here’s the memorandum arguing for dismissal for the judge, based on judicial immunity, and somewhat surprisingly, the 11th Amendment:
Inspired by a presentation with Princeton constitutional law professor, Robert P. George, I attended on Saturday, I aim to re-deliver the basic concepts of his presentation. It was fantastic, and put it all together in a way I had never heard before. But yet so simple. This surrounds the most basic concepts upon which our country was built: the design of our Constitution. What about its design inherently protects liberty and prevents tyranny? Join me at 6:30 p.m. live for Freedom is Scary, Episode No. 56:
As we discussed in yesterday’s episode of Freedom is Scary, the national’s leading industrial hygiene expert, Stephen E. Petty, P.E. CIH., C.S.P. of EES Group, Inc., is an actual expert in the use of masks. The science shows the reason that the virus spread in total disregard for widespread mask usage: because masks do nothing to stop the spread of the virus.
The science shows that COVID-19 virus particles are less than 1 micron in size, which is 4,000 times smaller than the diameter of a single human hair. These particles, which infect people through inhalation into the lungs, are so small, that when exhaled into an indoor room, it will take hours, and most likely days, to drop the five feet from one’s mouth to the floor. But there are actual solutions, which science provides to us, but which are being ignored by the the media and government officials.
Dr. Petty holds both a B.S. and an M.S. in Chemical Engineering, both with honors. He has an M.B.A. He was a Senior Research Scientist at Battelle. He was the Senior Research Engineer at Colombia Gas. He was the President of EES Group, an engineering company in Colombus, Ohio. He has a CIH national certification, as well as a C.S.P. certification and is a licensed Professional Engineer in Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Kentucky and Texas. He served as a national exposure/PPE expert in more than 400 cases, including Monsanto Roundup and DuPont C-8. He’s also an Adjunct Professor at Franklin University and holds 9 U.S. Patents. He holds membership in all the Industrial Hygiene professional associations, as well as the American Institute of Chemical Engineers.
“Industrial Hygiene” is “That science and art devoted to the anticipation, recognition, evaluation, and control of those environmental factors or stressors arising in or from the workplace, which may cause sickness, impaired health and well-being, or significant discomfort among workers or among the citizens of the community. So, it’s the scientific field associated with exposure, PPE and warnings. It has nothing to do with dentistry. Unfortunately, this field has been mostly ignored by the media and the Government, who has relied on medical doctors, who are not trained in exposure and PPE. That’s beginning to change. But not quickly enough.
Exposure can occur in 4 ways: inhalation, dermal, ingestion and intravenous. Obviously, lower concentrations of exposure are better, and less time of exposure is better. Dr. Petty has four main points to exposure:
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) is the least desirable way to protect people.
Masks are not PPE.
Scientific evidence suggests COVID-19 particles are mostly small aerosols – not droplets, which would mean respirators, rather than masks, are needed to protect the lungs (which makes the 6′ rule effectively meaningless).
Smaller particles are likely a greater cause of disease since they get past PPE and can reach deep into the lungs.
What DOES work are Engineering controls of dilution and destruction.
Thus, the least effective option of minimizing exposure is PPE. then minimizing exposure distance and time, and then engineering controls designed to dilute, destroy or contain the particles.
Masks, as we have been mandated to wear, are not “respirators.”
Despite telling the public to wear masks, OSHA admits they are not protective:
The CDC also tells the public to wear masks, but also admits they are not protective:
In other words, masks don’t meet any of the OSHA respiratory protection standards that are used in the workplace. Yet we’re being forcibly subjected to them, as are our children. The public has been told that COVID-19 particles fall to the ground within 6 feet, and therefore can safely “social distance.” However, OSHA has admitted otherwise:
To the extent that COVID-19 is aerosol, masks do absolutely nothing. A study from the National Academy of Sciences Press establish that most of the COVID-19 particles emitted from those infected are aerosols, or consisting of 0.3 to 0.5 microns. “Droplets” consist of particles much greater in size than aerosols. The science shows however, that most COVID-19 particles are aerosols, not droplets. As such, they are less than 1 micron in size.
The NASP paper concluded that “the proportion of small respiratory droplets (i.e., aerosols) [were the majority of particles exhaled in all subjects]….”
Exactly how tiny is a micron? It’s 4,000 times smaller than a single human hair.
The National Academy of Sciences Press paper also concluded that there may be an elevated risk of the airborne transmission of COVID-19 by way of the very small droplets that transmit through conventional masks and traverse distances far exceeding the conventional social distancing standards of 2 meters, or around 7 feet, and that exhaled aerosol numbers appear to be not only an indicator of disease progression, but a marker of disease risk in non-infected individuals.
These particles are so small, that the length of time they remain airborne effectively renders “social distancing” irrelevant to the indoor spread of COVID-19. An aerosol COVID-19 particle, the majority of which are less than 1 micron in size, takes hours, and even days, to fall just from mouth-level to the ground.
Aerosols (very small particles of less than 5 microns) can stay suspended in air for hours to days.
Since they stay suspended for so long, they can actually accumulate in concentration in indoor air, rather than dropping out to the ground as one would assume with “droplets.”
This effectively renders the 6 foot rule of social distancing useless; this also renders masks essentially useless, since they don’t filter out aerosols and can’t seal the gaps around the edges.
Imagine the virus as a gnat flying through a wall made out of chain link fence, which also has open windows and doors (which represents the gaps around the edges of the mask). There is literally nothing stopping or restricting the free and open travel of the gnat through the “wall.”
On February 15, 2021, almost a year after the beginning of the pandemic and state of emergency mandates, 13 physicians and scientists with expertise in aerosol science, occupational health and infectious diseases wrote to the CDC, as well as to the COVID response team at the White House and Dr. Fauci, asking them to investigate the implications of aerosols. They advised that:
For many months it has been clear that transmission through inhalation of small aerosol particles in an important and significant mode of COVID-19 virus transmission. They additionally warned that numerous studies have demonstrated that aerosols produced through breathing, talking and singing are concentrated close to the infected person and can remain in the air and viable for long periods of time and travel long distances within a room – sometimes even farther.
They further noted that although the CDC recognized back in October that COVID-19 was spread through inhalation of aerosols as a route of infection, most CDC guidance and recommendations have not yet been updated or strengthened to address and limit inhalation exposure to small aerosol particles. They noted that the CDC continues to use the outdated and confusing term “respiratory droplets” to describe both larger propelled droplet sprays and smaller inhaleable aerosol particles.
To make a long letter short, they informed the nation’s so-called health experts that CDC guidance and recommendations do not include the control measures necessary for protecting the public, and workers, from inhalation exposure to COVID-19.
So we know that with aerosols, masks do not protect you, or others. Masks have been ordered along with an emotional appeal to wear a mask to protect others, or so that you can go see your grandkids, or go in a store – or whatever. Instead of arguing over masks and trying to convince those who have been propagandized that they don’t work, he proposes actual solutions which do work: dilution or destruction:
So being outside when possible and increasing fresh air ventilation actually does work. But the other thing that works is destruction. Technology exists which can destroy viruses from indoor spaces, such as needle point ionization technology.
As a country, we’ve taken out more debt in the past 12 months than we did from the beginning of the pandemic, all the way to 1776. How many lives could have been saved, or still could be saved, if even some of the billions of dollars wasted could have gone to purchase ventilation systems and needle point ionization technology for our elderly population? Instead, we’re convincing people to have a false senses of security in wearing a mostly-useless mask.
In recent days, the CDC has finally begun to admit that the virus is spread through aerosols of 5 microns and less, which may take days to settle, yet they nevertheless stick to mask usage based solely on the existence of larger droplets, in addition to aerosols:
Research shows that the particle size of SARS-CoV-2 is around 0.1 micrometer (μm). However, the virus generally does not travel through the air by itself. These viral particles are human-generated, so the virus is trapped in respiratory droplets and droplet nuclei (dried respiratory droplets) that are larger. Most of the respiratory droplets and particles exhaled during talking, singing, breathing, and coughing are less than 5 μm in size…..
Collectively these particles are capable of remainingairborne for hours and are most associated with deep lung penetration.
In other words, masks aren’t going to be able to stop the aerosol spread of the virus, but we want you to continue wearing masks, because they will stop “trapped” particles in larger droplets, i.e., close-range spitting in each other’s mouths. But if your’e close enough to do that, and aerosol particles can get through the masks and linger in the air for hours, what difference does that make, since it’s already deeply penetrated your lungs?
But this is much more dangerous than just a futile exercise in COVID theater and self-congratulations about caring for those around you. Take a look at the German study which was released showing that children are being harmed by the forced usage of masks. The first results of a German study of over 26,000 children and adolescents show 68% of parents reported impairments in their children as a result of mask-wearing, including the following side effects: irritability (60%), headache (53%), difficulty concentrating (50%), decreased happiness (49%), malaise (42%), impaired learning (38%), and fatigue (37%).
What are the benefits of this mandate, even if masks did work in stopping a spread, that could possibly justify this collateral damage? And what about the emotional damage? A 2010 paper from Harvard University observed the damage that can be caused by exposing them to endless fear and anxiety: “Ensuring that young children have safe, secure environments in which to grow, learn, and develop healthy brains and bodies is not only good for the children themselves but also builds a strong foundation for a thriving, prosperous society,” wrote the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child for Harvard University. “Science shows that early exposure to circumstances that produce persistent fear and chronic anxiety can have lifelong consequences by disrupting the developing architecture of the brain.”
potential increased risk of self-contamination due to the manipulation of a face mask and subsequently touching eyes with contaminated hands;
potential self-contamination that can occur if non- medical masks are not changed when wet or soiled. This can create favourable conditions for microorganism to amplify;
potential headache and/or breathing difficulties, depending on type of mask used;
potential development of facial skin lesions, irritant dermatitis or worsening acne, when used frequently for long hours;
difficulty with communicating clearly;
a false sense of security, leading to potentially lower adherence to other critical preventive measures such as physical distancing and hand hygiene;
poor compliance with mask wearing, in particular by young children;
waste management issues; improper mask disposal leading to increased litter in public places, risk of contamination to street cleaners and environment hazard;
difficulty communicating for deaf persons who rely on lip reading;
disadvantages for or difficulty wearing them, especially for children, developmentally challenged persons, those with mental illness, elderly persons with cognitive impairment, those with asthma or chronic respiratory or breathing problems, those who have had facial trauma or recent oral maxillofacial surgery, and those living in hot and humid environments.
Why are we subjecting our children to forced mask usage in our schools when they do nothing to stop aerosol COVID-19 particles from being either exhaled or inhaled, and where if present, they could be floating around inside a classroom for hours, or even days? Given the evidence that children are being harmed, and even subjected to an increased possibility of infection through using them, such policies are truly irrational, misguided and dangerous.
Here’s the live video from Freedom is Scary Ep. No. 54, where I discuss litigation strategy to save the children from masks with civil rights lawyers, Chris Wiest from Kentucky, and Andy Fox from Tennessee: