News & Politics

Sheriff Revolts Against Lockdown: 'We Are Not Stormtroopers. We Are Peacekeepers'

E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune via AP, Pool, File

In a passionate Facebook post, Sheriff James Mendrick of DuPage County, IL, broke his silence in the wake of the Chinese virus pandemic-induced lockdown rules that have businesses gasping to survive. “As Sheriff, I feel that my own 1st amendment constitutional right to free speech has been completely trampled on by a governor who has threatened my Offices’ reimbursement and grant funds as a tool to force me not to speak,” he wrote. “I just can’t do this anymore. I stand with our citizens and businesses of DuPage County who have offered no trouble or no resistance to any rule we put upon them, no matter how strange.”

Peacekeepers don’t terrorize citizens

Mendrick praised his community for their compliance and willingness to pitch in to help and he said he won’t reward them with arrests and harassment for trying to open their businesses. “I’m just having difficulty with what looks like politics pitting everyone against each other and then wanting the police to arrest everyone who disagrees,” he continued. “We are not stormtroopers. We are peacekeepers.”

Mendrick takes his job as a protector of the Constitution seriously, and Governor Pritzker is going to have to learn to live with it. “All these years, you have told us that you want law enforcement that thinks before arresting, doesn’t violate your rights and treats their citizens with decency,” he wrote. “Now you have that and are asking us to regress into what you didn’t want and didn’t deserve. Please let us be the law enforcement you always asked us to be. Non-oppressive.”

Gov. Pritzker wants peacekeepers to do what?

Mendrick’s position is well-advised considering the problems that Chicago has had with police brutality in highly publicized cases like the shooting of Laquan McDonald and the subsequent coverup. That case threw the city into chaos and protests. For the governor to encourage police to act against the people’s rights is a head-scratcher.

“I will not victimize lawful residents of DuPage County trying to put food on their children’s table. I’m so proud of our DuPage citizens who have done everything right from the beginning. All I can say is thank you,” he concluded. He posted the message with a photo of a very serious bald eagle in front of a flag. ‘Merica! 

As Sheriff, I feel that my own 1st amendment constitutional right to free speech has been completely trampled on by a…

Posted by James Mendrick on Sunday, May 17, 2020

Civil Disobedience

Mendrick’s refusal to arrest people for trying to work comes on the heels of several high profile incidents of other law enforcement doing the same. Police refused to carry out Gretchen Whitmer’s orders to shut down Karl Manke’s barbershop. Police in New Jersey on Monday refused to shut down a gym operating in violation of the governor’s executive orders. Every day seems to bring more Americans willing to stand up and say no to the government takeover of their businesses.

Social Distancing Is State-Mandated Humiliation. Change My Mind

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

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