Protests over COVID curfews in California attract–you guessed it–maskless protesters

As COVID-19 cases continue to spike in parts of California, a group of self-described “patriots” took to the streets over the weekend to protest the state’s new curfew mandates aimed at curbing the virus.

Local news station KCAL9 covered one protest in the city of Huntington Beach, located in Orange County. Demonstrators arrived on the scene carrying American flags as well as Trump 2020 banners–though not masks–to voice their disapproval of the new curfew, which mandates citizens stay home between 10pm and 5am. People doing essential work, responding to an emergency, shopping for groceries, picking up takeout or walking their dog are exempt from the restrictions.

Apparently, that’s still too much to ask of some Californians, as is wearing a mask to prevent the spread of the virus.

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“I’d like to see curfews go away,” one protestor told KCAL 9. “I think there are too many restrictions, as is. Obviously, a lot of people don’t agree with what our governor and city officials are doing, but I’d prefer to see something done a little bit different but curfews are just a little too far.”

The Orange County Sheriff’s office has said it will refuse to enforce the curfew, apparently siding with protestors who find it too restrictive. The office has adopted what it deems an “education-first” approach, hoping that citizens will take other precautions to prevent spread of COVID-19.

We’re not exactly sure where these protesters feel a need to be in the middle of the night, or why they still refuse to wear masks. Perhaps someone should tell them: at the time of this writing, Orange County has reported a massive increase in COVID positivity rates, with almost 72,000 reported cases in the county alone. Last week, new infection rates also passed 1,000 per day–a new record high for the area.