From the never-ending “It’s My Way or the Highway” file, Gov. Phil Murphy sued Wayne Township's mayor because he decided to have a graduation before his mysterious “data” said it’s OK to do so.

Really, doesn’t Murphy have anything better to do with his time between press conferences and photo ops? Wayne Mayor Christopher P. Vergano had planned graduation ceremonies for Wayne Valley and Wayne Hills, the town’s two high schools this week.

Murphy got miffed once again that his proclamations were not being adhered to decided to sue, the way he did when Asbury Park voted to resume indoor dining at restaurants. Of course, the obvious answer to the controversy would be for any student or parent who felt uncomfortable or unsafe attending the event to simply stay home. But that wasn’t enough for Murphy. He likes his rules, however arbitrary they may be, to be adhered to to the letter of the “law.”

The graduations would have taken place June 18 and June 19 at the municipal parking lot at the Town Hall in Wayne, and would specifically follow all social distancing requirements. But Murphy‘s ruling would only allow them as of July 6.

As if those 16 days were going to be the difference between life and death for all of these graduates and their families?

According to an article on, the state filing says, “Highly populated communal gatherings such as celebrations and graduations entail extensive, excited and prolonged interactions, and close person-to-person contact.” It continues, “This presents a significant public health risk unnecessarily increasing the potential of COVID-19 exposure through community spread.”

Yeah, we get it. But two weeks later we are all going to be fine? It’s ridiculous. But let’s assume that there’s some logic to it — that there’s a reason, other than power-mongering, that those graduations would be much safer two weeks later. It would only require the smallest amount of “data or science” that the governor so breathlessly refers to ad nauseam to show why those couple of weeks would make such a difference.

But unfortunately, as is the case with all of "Emperor" Murphy’s rulings, that his spurious “data and science” is either nonexistent or not our business.

And you thought Gov. Chris Christie was a bully.

Correction: An earlier version of this post said Murphy sued Wayne's school district. He sued its mayor, as the ceremony in question wasn't planned by the district. 

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco. Any opinions expressed are Judi's own.

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