SANITY: New Jersey Gym Owner Defies Lockdown Order and Cops Refuse to Stop Him

Facebook video screenshot of businessman Ian Smith speaking with Tucker Carlson.

Ian Smith, the owner of Atilis Gym in New Jersey, is defying Governor Phil Murphy’s (D-N.J.) orders that non-essential businesses remain closed. He announced on Tucker Carlson’s show that he is opening his business on Monday.


CARLSON: You’re openly defying [Murphy] on television. What do you think is going to happen to you when you do this?

SMITH: We are prepared for any and all consequences. Our actions on Monday are going to be grounded in the ideals of civil disobedience. What we intend to showcase is that we reject the premise of essential versus non-essential businesses. Anything that Walmart can do with hundreds, if not thousands, of people passing through the stores every single day touching everything in sight, a small business, whether it be a restaurant, a gym, a hair salon, or anything else, can replicate those things. And we can go above and beyond.

Re-Opening His Gym No Matter What

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy is keeping his state under indefinite shutdown. But one business owner says he's fed up with the power grab. Ian Smith plans to re-open his gym and he has a plan for keeping patrons safe.

Posted by Tucker Carlson Tonight on Wednesday, May 13, 2020

New Jersey gym makes its own rules

Smith is planning on opening with temperature checks, closed locker rooms, and much more, as indicated by his announcement on Facebook.

Tomorrow we open our doors for the first time in months. We ask that you read these rules and be prepared to follow them to ensure a safe, smooth reopening. See you all tomorrow.

Posted by Atilis Gym, Bellmawr, NJ on Sunday, May 17, 2020

Cops Refuse to Shut Down New Jersey Gym or Arrest Protesters

Police showed up to the gym on Monday and addressed the crowd. “You’re all in violation of the executive order,” said an officer. “But on that note, have a good day, everybody be safe.”

The officer even fist-bumped a protester on his way out.


There are only a few brave souls around the nation who have stood against the decrees of governors who ordered their businesses shuttered without just compensation. Shelley Luther in Texas went to jail for it before the Texas Supreme Court released her after Gov. Greg Abbott (R-Texas) and Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) championed her. Karl Manke in Michigan is still in the middle of his public fight with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D-Mich.) over his barbershop and is operating even after losing his license. A gun shop owner and several other business owners in New York have filed a suit against Governor Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.). These protests and court battles will hopefully set a precedent, making it impossible for governors to ever do this again to small businesses.


Megan Fox is the author of “Believe Evidence; The Death of Due Process from Salome to #MeToo,” and host of The Fringe podcast. Follow on Twitter @MeganFoxWriter

This One Change Would Help Businesses Survive Lockdowns and Convince Governments to Shorten Them


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