RALEIGH – Despite the fact that absolutely no scientific evidence has supported the conclusion that bars or restaurants serve as extraordinary transmission hubs for the mostly mild coronavirus, Governor Roy Cooper is extending the ban on alcohol sales after 11:00 PM until October 2.
The curfew on sales stems from Cooper’s frustration that, because he closed bars, restaurants were filling up with late night drinking patrons instead. Working around his order was an affront to his executive authority, so Cooper had to ban alcohol sales after a certain time. Because drinking beer with friends at Applebee’s at 10:59 PM is safe; but drinking those beers with friends at 11:01 PM is certain death from SARS-CoV2.
From the Executive Order:
And just in case you have half a mind to sue Cooper over these orders that completely ruin your livelihood based on his arbitrary whim; don’t waste your time. Built into all of these edicts is a clause (admittedly used in lots of government action based on a notion of sovereign immunity) that essentially says, ‘Nothing in this act should be construed as a reason to sue us; you can’t sue us, we say so, we’re immune to being sued; because, we say so.’
That ‘no right to private action’ provision is kind of like those stickers you might have seen on the back of a rickety over-full dump truck spilling rocks on the highway that unilaterally proclaims “Not Responsible for Broke Windshields.”
….because we say so…
That legal concept further stems from English common law where it was employed to shield the monarch from the legal recourse of his subjects. So here again, we have King Cooper issuing decrees that injure business owners and so he clarifies in the order that those subject cannot sue him over it. Isn’t that convenient?
The curfew does not apply to grocery stores or convenience stores, only to those places where alcohol is consumed on-site. However, that means catering (weddings) and other such offerings are subject to the curfew as well.
Moreover, the extension of the curfew makes it practically certain that Cooper will not allow bars to open anytime before October 2, either.
Recently, gym owners and franchises have decided to buck the governor and open their doors despite orders keeping them closed. Perhaps it is time for bars and restaurants to band together and do the same to push back against unilateral restrictions that are damaging their business and blatantly oppressing individuals’ rights.