Numb-nut “LIVE FREE AND DIE” protests come to OC’s beach towns!




HB Friday 4/17, pic Daily Pilot

“When the freedom they wished for most
was freedom from responsibility,
then they ceased to be free.”
Gibbon, Decline of the Roman Empire, quoted today by Gov. Cuomo

I think I was more relieved than disappointed, though a little of both, to find out that the Usual Rightwing Suspects in my old hometown of Huntington Beach were NOT largely responsible for Friday’s stoopid anti-quarantine protest.  Apparently most of these lost souls wandered over from other towns, most notably the Inland Empire, where they’ve probably been dying for some fresh beach air.

Self-styled “World’s Greatest Mayor” in rare stealth mode.

In Victor’s video (at bottom of post) I only recognized two HB knuckledraggers – goofy former Mayor and Poseidon booster Joe Carchio, who tried as hard as he could to keep out of the video, and notorious white supremacist / perennial failed candidate Gracey Van Der Mark.  And they BOTH WORE MASKS, unlike the majority of their fellow protestors.

That’s the thing – these anti-quarantine protestors can’t win, with us normal people.  When we see them without masks, close and touching each other, we decry their dangerous irresponsibility.  But then when we see them in masks, that seems humorous – if the point of your protest is that the danger of COVID is overblown, then why are you protecting yourselves from it?

But back to my dashed HB pre-conceptions – when I heard this was happening Friday I thought to myself I bet this is ring-led by the dim-witted alt-righters at HB Community Forum (who long ago banned me) and cheered on by their favorite scribe Chris Epting – sounds just like something they would do. Wrong on both counts!  All the HB Facebook forums had plenty of criticisms of the protest (along with praise), and I can’t find Chris weighing in at all.  (Which does make sense; he tries to avoid taking a side on any issue, like Poseidon, that could make him too many enemies either way.  FIRE PITS!  FIRE PITS!)

Ya know, she’s right – Pandemics does NOT! Also Daily Pilot.

The media naturally gravitates toward the most obviously nutty protestors (by the way both spellings of “protester” are correct so let’s give ’em both equal time.)  Like the guy in the ghetto-rigged HAZMAT suit who was both saying that “COVID IS A LIE!” and also that it’s a terrible virus designed by Communist China and purposely set loose on us, which if true sounds like not a lie.  OJ friend and protest sympathizer Sean Paden retorts, “We get crazy people at every kind of protest, there were crazies at our Kelly Thomas protests too.”

We don’t like quarantine! We are patriots! San Clemente numb-nuts Sunday, pic by Register.

True that, pero… it’s hard for most of us normal people to wrap our heads around what these protestors are saying.  Sure, they are getting tired of the science-necessitated social distancing, quarantine, most businesses closed, who isn’t?  But how is that impatience, as they seem to think, PATRIOTIC?  Or conservative? 

Okay, well, as we all know, over the last few decades, the Republican Party has become ever more skeptical of science, and experts, as scientists and experts tend to give info that’s inconvenient to the malefactors of great wealth.  Furthermore for decades the GOP’s plutocratic schoolmasters have taught their faithful to always mistrust the government, except when it’s run by them. 

And into this yawning, hungry, abyss of ignorance, tumbles headlong conspiracy theory after conspiracy theory (much more so than on the left.)   And misquoting New Hampshire’s celebrated license-plate frames, these rightwing sheeple lemmings scream, “Live free and DIE!”

HB – they came from all over, this lady from LA! Pic Reg

Is this the logical endgame of the Republican Party, which the rest of us will never fully comprehend?  We know the Party of Lincoln has devolved over 150 years to become the Party of Trump – has it gone further now to becoming a “Death Cult” as Mike Lofgren wrote on the same Friday as the HB protest, quoting (among many others) infamous Indiana Congressman Trey Hollingsworth that “It is always the American government’s position to say, in the choice between the loss of our way of life as Americans and the loss of life, of American lives, we have to always choose the latter”?

Maybe not totally yet, maybe the right is still more nuanced, as the generally tiresome conservative commentator Ben Shapiro tweets (also on Friday):

But spoilsport Ben doesn’t get it, he takes all the risky faux-macho fun out of it!  I think the safest thing to say about all these quarantine protesters is that they’re overgrown children with ADHD who just couldn’t hang for more than a month of helping our nation fight an invisible enemy.  Useless unpatriotic deadbeats whose dead weight you and I will have to carry.  Wouldn’t it be good if there was a grownup in the White House that they could look up to, who would keep them in line?

Free-DUMB! Newport Beach Monday, Register pic. LOVE that social distancing, Mr Trump!

*Snark* NOT.  In between standing sullenly by while all his science advisers counsel patriotic patience, Trump runs to his Tweeter and Tweets “Liberate Minnesota!  Liberate Virginia!  Liberate Michigan!”  Which the protesters take, naturally, as the President’s encouragement to defy their (Democratic) governors’ virus-squashing policies and SPREAD THE COVID LIKE LOVE. 

Questioned by reporters about the protests, Trump replies with the only thing he cares about, “Well, they seem to like ME,” and then lies that “believe it or not, they are all social distancing” – are we up to six digits yet for the number of lies he’s told publicly as President?  That’s one reason people are  singing songs like this nowadays:

So Friday all THAT happened.  They came, in slightly larger droves, to San Clemente on Sunday.  And in a much smaller but enthusiastic squirt to Newport Beach on Monday.  THEY’RE THREATENING TO COME BACK TO THE HB PIER IN GREATER NUMBERS ON MAY 1, WITHOUT A PERMIT – will City Attorney Gates rouse himself to do anything?  They’re all mad as hell and not gonna take this quarantine any more, and if there’s another big spike in infections and deaths soon, I’m sure they’ll find someone else to blame.  Maybe Obama or Pelosi or the lamestream media.

Our final commentary comes from a young man named Carlos Avila, responding Sunday to these numb-nuts protests. (This has gone viral on Facebook):

Dear protestors,

Y’all realize that people in NYC have been holed up in tiny-ass apartments the size of your car garage, for twice as long as you guys have?  They don’t have any beaches and most of them don’t know what a “porch” is.  Restaurants being shut down means most of them have to cook in kitchens that are built for instant ramen at best.  Almost nobody has a car so they can’t hoard toilet paper like you fuckers, or escape to a nearby town to take a walk in a park by a lake.

Yet they’re all making silly videos on FB shouting thanks to healthcare workers at 7pm every day (while YOU motherfuckers block the paths to hospitals) and they’re coming together like a community to defeat this thing despite going through hell.  You know why?

Cuz you guys are a buncha fucking pussies.  You snowflake-ass motherfucking pieces of shit need to whine about your rights getting trampled on cuz the government is “telling you what to do with your bodies!?”  Seriously.  Fucking puke in my mouth.  And all those guns and ammo vests ‘n’ shit?  Who the fuck are you gonna shoot?  The virus?!  Doctors?!   Put the fucuking guns away, you psychopathic insecure ass-hats.  Go the fuck inside and stay there and stop fucking protesting.  Bye.

Well said, sir, well said.

About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist/composer in Orange County, and official troubador of both Anaheim and Huntington Beach (the two ends of the Santa Ana Aquifer.) Performs regularly both solo, and with his savage-jazz quintet The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at, or 714-235-VERN.