Culture

Peak Buffoonery: Paddleboarder in Ocean Off Malibu Is Arrested for Not Socially Distancing

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A couple of weeks ago, thousands of people swarmed the Southern California beaches to get some fresh air and get their minds off the coronavirus for awhile.

In response to some people not socially distancing,  the Commissars of California closed the beaches.

Since then, miles of police tape have been deployed to cut off parking lots, bike paths, hiking trails, and mountain-bike trails to prevent people from going to these places and getting a little exercise for fear they may get too close to each other.

Drones are being sent up to spy on scofflaws.

There’s no surfing allowed. Surfing. A sport that requires social distancing is outlawed. Thousands of kids in Southern California who are required to get physical activity to get their virtual school PE credits are not allowed to surf.

And don’t even think about standing on the other side of a tennis court and hitting balls.

Forget swimming, the pools are closed.

Which brings us to a paddleboarder in the Malibu area of LA County.  To be clear, he was in the ocean off the coast of Malibu, minding his own business and paddleboarding by himself.

Well, he was alone until the cops and lifeguards came. They corralled the paddleboarder with the use of two lifeguard boats.

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KTLA reports that the paddleboarder was accused of ignoring the call of lifeguards to get out of the ocean because he wasn’t staying socially distanced in the age of the CORONAVIRUS!

Socially distanced like this, apparently. In the middle of a cop sandwich. He’ll take his with extra mustard and some handcuffs.

Screenshot/Instagram

KTLA reports the arrested paddleboarder was booked and then released and ordered to appear in court:

Officials did not release any identifying information on the man. He could face a $1,000 fine, up to six months in jail, or both.

So far, the state order has not been widely enforced by police agencies, but this isn’t the first time this week a Southern California man has faced consequences for being in the ocean.

According to the Los Angeles Times, a surfer in Manhattan Beach was fined $1,000 last weekend after similarly ignoring repeated orders to exit the ocean.

Some people were baffled.

“Two guys together in a small boat chase down man all by himself to ensure proper social distancing.”

It’s actually a $1000 fine but we get the point:

“I’m, he was by himself. What’s the deal? Oh… a $400 ticket paid to the city. Now I understand.”

“Thank God now the ocean is safe.”

But the ocean isn’t the only thing being watched for scofflaws. LA Mayor Eric Garcetti has announced plans for a spying program to look for businesses that are open. He announced this week that he has already shut off the water and power to eight businesses that he didn’t deem “essential.”

The Commissars of California mean well. We all know they’re just trying to keep us from getting too close to others in this pandemic, but with these kinds of shenanigans, they run the risk of open rebellion against what are plainly dumb laws. And when the laws become a mockery of themselves, we’ve reached peak buffoonery.