NJ’s 10-guests rule — Will cops knock on your door to check? (Opinion)
Well I can’t say I didn’t warn you. I told you that there would be frightening things happening when it came to restrictions for COVID-19. And since people are under the mistaken notion that somehow their lives are going to be saved by having fewer people over, no one seems to be up in arms about it. But I am.
Here’s the latest: a new restriction caps home gatherings at a maximum of 10 people. That’s right. I said TEN. Also correct is that I said HOME, meaning your OWN HOME that you BOUGHT and PAY TAXES on in the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. You can a maximum of 10 people (9 if you count yourself).
Let that sink in.
I’m not really sure how this can be enforced. The only way I believe they would be able to check compliance is by coming to knock on your door and asking to count heads. And even if you’re brainwashed enough to think that this is a good idea, would you have any problem at all with the government — in the form of an armed police officer — entering your home to see how many guests you have?
At the risk of sounding hyperbolic (it’s not), this really does smack of totalitarian government tactics. So far, I have heard that the defense of this is that there is precedence for cops entering your home to check on things. For instance, marital rape, domestic violence, or illegal activity in the home (and even that sits on a constitutional thin ice). But as much as Phil Murphy would like it to be, the amount of guests you have in your home is NOT a legal issue. These arbitrary rules are NOT laws. They are “executive orders.”
Even though the governor will treat all of his orders as though they are laws, he’s really not allowed to, even in an unending “emergency." Laws have to be voted on either by the legislature of this state or by the people in a public referendum. So before you accept the governor’s new edict so quickly, think about how you will feel if you have a large family and you’re gathering together and you hear that knock on the door.
Will you hide people in closets? Will you be scared? Will you tell everyone to be quiet and pretend no one's home? Can they then break your door down because of “suspected” violations of “executive orders?” And before you say, “Oh, that could never happen!” think about it. We’re actually not that far away from it right now.
Let that sink in.
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.