Covid Conflict: Illinois Prosecutor Will NOT Enforce Governor’s Lockdown Order

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Covid Conflict: Illinois Prosecutor Will NOT Enforce Governor’s Lockdown Order

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Taking to heart St. Augustine’s observation that an “unjust law is no law at all,” a growing number of protesters and some sheriffs have decided to resist coronavirus lockdown orders. And now they reportedly have a powerful new ally: an Illinois state attorney who has announced that he will not enforce Governor J.B. Pritzker’s lockdown order in his county.

Pritzker has already been accused of “acting like a dictator, not a governor” and has had his 30-day stay-at-home order extension blocked by a judge. Now Gregory M. Minger, the state’s attorney in centrally located Woodford County, has announced in an e-mail communication that he has joined the freedom phalanx, according to website Illinois Leaks.

Presented by the website, the e-mail reads, in part:


I sent the following to the Sheriff, Hillary, Kent, and John Krug earlier today. This can be forwarded on to the mayors if it has not already been done.

… “I just want this group to know that I have been receiving daily questions from citizens of my opinion of the constitutional issues with Governor Pritzker’s extension of the stay-at-home order. I plan on responding with it is not enforceable and will not be enforced at the county level due to statutory issues (beyond the 30 days) as well as improper taking of property interests and pecuniary interests without just compensation. There are certainly due process issues with a continued stay-at-home order. The law does not provide for a quarantine of the state, only individuals that have a contagious illness.

Every four years I swear an oath that in part states “…do solemnly swear that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Illinois…”.  I cannot let the powers that be continue to impose their will on the people in violation of separation of powers, due process, and our most basic concepts of liberty and freedom for all. We need to live in a world with COVID-19 … no doubt about it. But the basic ideals our country were established on and that people have fought so hard for over the past more than 200 years cannot be eroded in this way.

… Bottom line is as it stands at this moment, the extension of the stay-at-home order will not be prosecuted or enforced in Woodford County. People, not government, need to determine what is best and safest for them, their loved ones, and the community around them. If that means staying at home, then they should. If that means going back to work and opening restaurants and bars and stores, then they should.”

Gregory M. Minger
State’s Attorney
Woodford County, Illinois
115 North Main Street
Eureka, IL 61530

Minger should be applauded for taking his oath of office seriously. Contrast this with New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy, who said that the Constitution was above his “pay grade” when asked about his lockdown-order civil rights violations.

Minger also seems to take the science seriously. Just consider what else his e-mail included:

In addition, the Illinois Department of Public Health in 2015 published their emergency plans when dealing with contagious diseases such as influenza. Of particular importance to our present day discussion is the following excerpt in the IDPH’s own words:

“Quarantine (a period of isolation to prevent disease spread) is not effective in controlling multiple influenza outbreaks in large, immunologically naïve populations, because the disease spreads too rapidly to identify and to control chains of transmission. Even if quarantine were somewhat effective in controlling influenza in large populations, it would not be feasible to implement and enforce with available resources, and would damage the economy by reducing the workforce. Most people will voluntarily quarantine themselves in their home.”

I confirmed that is on the IDPH website and downloaded it as well.

In other words, Illinois’ current lockdown strategy contradicts what its own health department has for years prescribed. Why?

Because disease mitigation wasn’t a political issue in 2015.

Now it is.

We’ve dealt with rampant respiratory diseases before. The Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918-19 killed 675,000 Americans, which adjusted for population equates to a bit more than two million today.

We didn’t shut down most of the country.

The “Asian Flu” pandemic of 1957 killed 116,000 Americans, which equates to approximately 223,000 today.

We didn’t shut down the country.

The “Hong Kong Flu” pandemic of 1968 killed at least 100,000 Americans, which equates to approximately 164,915 today.

We didn’t shut down the country.

(We also didn’t shrink from naming the diseases after their places of origin.)

And every year the seasonal flu claims tens of thousands more American victims, including 61,000 during the 2017-18 winter season and 358 children during 2009-10, when Barack Obama was president. We didn’t shut down the country those times, either.

But in 1918-19, 1957, 1968, 2009-10, and 2017-18, disease mitigation also wasn’t a political issue.

Now it is.

Yesterday I called COVID-19 the “Wizard of Oz Virus,” because — though as with the flu, it’s deadly to the vulnerable — its reputation greatly exceeds its power. As to this, Minger’s Woodford County has suffered one Wuhan virus death. Yet because the disease is now a political issue, his county joins thousands of other mostly unaffected rural areas in being locked down, punitively, just like virus hot spot New York City.

Experts who look at the science, not the politics, tell us that the Wuhan virus will likely have a mortality rate approximating that of the seasonal flu and that the only way to combat it is via herd immunity. In fact, they warn that our current hysteria- and power-fueled lockdown strategy is counterproductive and that lockdowns don’t save lives.

Because a medical issue has been made political, more than disease mitigation now, we need tyranny mitigation. Following State’s Attorney Minger’s example would be a good start.


Selwyn Duke (@SelwynDuke) has written for The New American for more than a decade. He has also written for The Hill, Observer, The American Conservative, WorldNetDaily, American Thinker, and many other print and online publications. In addition, he has contributed to college textbooks published by Gale-Cengage Learning, has appeared on television, and is a frequent guest on radio.

Courtesy of The New American