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COVID-19: Stand for Freedom rally planned in Paso Robles on May 1 


Image from the Paso Robles Stand for Freedom group on Facebook. Article 1, Section 1 of the California Constitution: “All people are by nature free and independent and have inalienable rights. Among these are enjoying and defending life and liberty, acquiring, possessing, and protecting property, and pursuing and obtaining safety, happiness, and privacy.”


–A local woman and friends are planning a peaceful and non-partisan Stand for Freedom rally in Paso Robles in response to the effects of COVID-19 Shelter at Home restrictions.

“Our event is a demonstration in which we are exercising our First Amendment Constitutional right to peaceably assemble,” says organizer Amanda Hawkins.

“Our plan is to meet at the Paso Robles Downtown City Park at 12 p.m. on Friday, May 1,” she says. “We will have featured speakers and welcome attendees with the opportunity to speak as well. There will even be a patriotic parade horse in attendance.”

“I am planning this protest because there is no science justifying the shut down of our county,” Hawkins says. “We have had one death out of our county’s approximate 285,000 residents. As more testing is being done, we are seeing huge amounts of people testing positive with zero symptoms. We are also seeing masses of people who already have antibodies for COVID-19.”

“Meanwhile, our residents are losing their businesses, their jobs, their livelihood; their ability to feed their families and themselves, and pay their rent or mortgage. People have lost access to dental care; surgeries and medical procedures have been canceled. The burdens of economic stress and isolation are detrimental to people’s mental health. People are struggling with depression and we will likely see an increase in suicide.”

“We need to be deeply concerned about long term mental health and economic repercussions of keeping our county closed. We would like to see our county reopen. We would like to see our residents thrive mentally and monetarily. Our hospitals are not overburdened. The models used in the decision making of closing everything down have proved to be inaccurate. We need our freedom restored to save our people and save our economy.”

The Paso Robles Police Department has requested attendees to maintain 6-foot distance from one another and stay off the sidewalks and streets, she says. “This protest is to remain peaceful and non-partisan. We would love to see a great turn out of residents to show our government that we mean business.”

As of Friday morning, the group’s Facebook event page had 45 people signed up to attend and an additional 86 interested.

Paso Robles Mayor Steve Martin said last week that he was aware of a demonstration being planned regarding government COVID-19 restrictions on businesses. He said, “While the city has to enforce the shelter mandate, we did not initiate it and have no jurisdiction rescind it,” as the Shelter at Home orders have come from the County of San Luis Obispo and the State of California.

Related story: COVID-19: SLO County leaders ask governor to allow steps for re-opening local economy.


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About the author: Publisher Scott Brennan

Scott Brennan is the publisher of this newspaper and founder of Access Publishing. Follow him on Twitter, LinkedIn, or follow his blog.