Delivery alert

There may be an issue with the delivery of your newspaper. This alert will expire at NaN. Click here for more info.

Recover password

Restrictions on NM businesses unfair, revealing governor’s political hypocrisy

In recent weeks, thousands of rioters and protesters across the nation have descended upon American cities to continue race-driven protests, such as in Brooklyn, where a rally garnered approximately 15,000 attendees – some not wearing face masks and most not practicing social distancing. Liberal commentators applauded the massive rally as “historic.”

However, once President Donald Trump announced he would begin holding campaign rallies, the first of which was held in Tulsa, Okla., critics viciously lashed out at him, claiming his rally would endanger public health, while they remain radio silent on the large protests developing across the country, many of which do not follow health precautions. But the president’s team provided face masks to any attendee who wanted them, and precautions were made to ensure the safety of all in attendance.

In New Mexico, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s press secretary, Nora Sackett, blasted peaceful protesters urging Lujan Grisham to reopen the state, calling them “dangerous and in violation of the public health order against congregations.” However, once “Black Lives Matter” and “Antifa” activists began taking to the streets in large numbers in protest to the death of George Floyd, many of them violating public health orders, Lujan Grisham had nothing but praise for them.

Lujan Grisham said, “This is a violation of the mass gatherings, no doubt, but we’re just going to take a leap of faith in protecting protesters who have no other way, quite frankly. Right? There’s no other way to be seen, to be heard, to be respected, and to be clear about your message.” She clearly sees one group of peaceful protesters simply wanting to reopen our state and get back to work as “dangerous,” while groups she agrees with are just breaking her rules to “be heard.”

This is a blatant double standard.

New Mexico’s COVID-19 cases remain low outside of the Navajo Nation, but Gov. Lujan Grisham has mandated some of the nation’s strictest coronavirus lockdowns on our citizens. According to a recent report by WalletHub, New Mexico was listed as the state with the most restrictions in a ranking of every state and the District of Columbia. New Mexico beat out even some of the strictest states, such as California, Vermont and Hawaii, despite the (then) downward trend in COVID-19 cases.

The unfair restrictions on citizens, businesses, places of worship, and other entities have forced the permanent closure of more than 200 restaurants, Albuquerque movie theaters, Movies West and Movies 8, and countless other businesses in both rural and urban centers across the state.

Throughout her lockdown, Lujan Grisham has allowed big-box stores to operate, while small businesses have been only slowly reopening, many at 25% or 50% capacity.

The governor has allowed breweries to reopen while not giving the same freedoms to bars, which many see as unfair. Bars across the state hang in jeopardy as their existence balances on whether the governor has split hairs to try and explain away why breweries get a green light while bars are still on total lockdown.

It seems as though each day a news article surfaces showing yet another business forced to shut down permanently because of the governor’s strict lockdown, while she continues to pick and choose winners and losers.

It’s time to stop playing politics with the pandemic and having one set of rules for one group while having different ones for another.


Subscribe now! Albuquerque Journal limited-time offer

Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email or Contact the writer.