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D&D and the rising pandemic

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
If it costs the whole of us or the country $12 billion, that's so remote that it's abstract. It might as well not even exist. And that's the problem - people making these bad decisions think so individualistically that they can't seem to grasp the broader implications of what it does to us as a whole.
And you're putting it in terms of money.

Let's note that covid-19 has a roughly 3% mortality rate in the US. So, if Sturgis is responsible for 250,000 cases, it is then responsible for the 7,500 deaths that are statistically likely to ensue.
 

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In a pandemic where a significant disease vector is asymptomatic transmission- such as it is with C19- asymptomatic transmission will rise to the legal requirement of “immanence” in almost any court of initial jurisdiction. Any court that doesn’t follow the science on that will likely get their findings overruled by a higher court.
I want to believe this.

Besides the caveat Umbran pointed out, In most cases, federal law trumps state law. Someone relying on a state law to override federal disclosure requirements is playing Russian roulette with only one bullet removed from the revolver.
1. The multibillion dollar marijuana industry in the US disagrees with you.

2. Do you actually think the current federal government would even consider stepping in to uphold a law requiring masks? From what I can see, the feds are one of the biggest sources of the fight against requiring them.

Not only that, but even the ADA has provisions regarding legal involuntary disclosure of a patient’s conditions (though most of the defining thereof is in case law).
http://www.adagreatlakes.org/Public...entiality_Requirements_Under_the_ADA_2018.pdf
Everything I read in my skim through that doc was about employer/employee relationships. Stores/customers/etc are a different case. Check out these two examples:

Places like stores and service providers are actually forbidden from asking for proof of a medical condition that requires accommodations like service dogs or wheelchairs. Just claiming it is completely sufficient. AFAIK, this has never been challenged in the court for masks, but I suspect it will go the same way.

It is unfortunate that years of work to make the world more fair to people disabilities has created a number of backdoors for those that want to abuse the system. And while there may be theoretical penalties for individuals who falsely claim special treatment, the risk is larger for companies that don't want to risk accidentally denying special treatment when asked.

The base charge is almost always going to be trespassing or disturbing the peace because the person making the claim is doing so in a place of business- a.k.a. someone else’s private property- and those are the most common grounds for ejection. They break down like this:
...
And private businesses can likewise insist on masks as a condition of entry. Those “No shirt, no shoes, no service” signs are perfectly legal and enforceable...and originally based in state & federal public health regs, Heck, even non-health related dress codes are enfoceav as long as they’re not discriminatory in nature or enforcement.
This is the part that I find terrifying on a personal level. If I'm in a store and someone else refuses to wear a mask, there's little I can do personally to make them wear it. I could call the police and report it. But if the base charge needs to be trespassing or disturbing the peace, I'm relying on the store to ask the person to don a mask. If the store decides they don't want to get involved, there's nothing I can do. That's why I firmly believe we need much stricter mask laws; the current ones just don't cut it.

If the state can order you to get an injection, forcing you to wear a mask is kid stuff.
The anti-vax movement is working very hard to prevent this exact thing, and they're having a depressing amount of success with it.

I do admire your positive thinking in all this, I just don't share it.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
1. The multibillion dollar marijuana industry in the US disagrees with you.
No, it doesn't. There's simply enough profit in it for them to take the risk.

2. Do you actually think the current federal government would even consider stepping in to uphold a law requiring masks? From what I can see, the feds are one of the biggest sources of the fight against requiring them.
The Federal government cannot uphold a State law, order, or ordinance. Not their jurisdiction.

Places like stores and service providers are actually forbidden from asking for proof of a medical condition that requires accommodations like service dogs or wheelchairs. Just claiming it is completely sufficient.
You're missing the point. The question is not whether the store can ask for proof, as we were talking about what happens in court.

John doesn't want to wear a mask. Jane owns a small market. John comes to the store, without a mask. Jane, following local ordinances, orders and policies, says John cannot enter. John claims an ADA exemption.

Jane doesn't have to ask for proof. She doesn't have to (and indeed, cannot legally) allow John inside the store. She offers John accommodation - give her a list of what's needed and she'll have someone gather the items and bring them out. John, being a putz, raises a fuss, and the thing ends up in court in one of many possible ways.

THE COURT asks John on what basis he claims the ADA exemption. Now, John does have to prove that he actually has a relevant condition. If he does not, his entire case is fraudulent, and John himself is in deep kimchee.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Biggest cluster now linked to church. Police broke up a service during lockdown.

75 million dollars a day to lick Auckland down in lost activity.

School student had Covid so they shut the entire school down for the week.

 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
We had 9 sororities going into quarantine each with 4 or 5 cases all since Aug 23 ... yeh boom sororities are a bad idea right now. And the USA is kind of too.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
We had 9 sororities going into quarantine each with 4 or 5 cases all since Aug 23 ... yeh boom sororities are a bad idea right now. And the USA is kind of too.
Well it's a month today since Covid 2.0.

It's about 10% of the size of 1.0, 2 deaths total so far. Peaked at 13 cases a day they've hammered it down to 2-5 cases a day.

Takes about a month to get that last trickle down to 0. Might take slightly longer due to things like churches and it's getting harder to get people to comply.

Mostly the US style evangelical churches that prey on the Pasifika community's.
 

Cadence

Legend
Supporter
We had 9 sororities going into quarantine each with 4 or 5 cases all since Aug 23 ... yeh boom sororities are a bad idea right now. And the USA is kind of too.
I had to check. We were up to 12 quarantined Greek Houses (out of 20 possible iirc) on September 4th. :-/
 

billd91

Hobbit on Quest
I had to check. We were up to 12 quarantined Greek Houses (out of 20 possible iirc) on September 4th. :-/
Two of the big dorms on the UW-Madison campus have just been quarantined. That's over 2200 students. All of the kids are being tested in them - one's got a 10% positive rate, the other 17%... so far.
The whole campus has shifted to the next 2 weeks strictly online.
 



Cadence

Legend
Supporter
That much is sanity
Once the students are on campus, (for at least here) I'm not sure going all on-line matters that much.

The vast majority of classes are either already all on-line or have the option (which most students seem to be taking), the capacity in rooms is 1/3 to 1/2 usual with seats blocked out, the AC is chilled water by room, and the wearing of masks and santiation is enforced. Unless they're locked down in their dorm rooms, I wonder if a lot of them have less space while watching on couches next to each other or in their apartment common areas?
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Once the students are on campus, (for at least here) I'm not sure going all on-line matters that much.

The vast majority of classes are either already all on-line or have the option (which most students seem to be taking), the capacity in rooms is 1/3 to 1/2 usual with seats blocked out, the AC is chilled water by room, and the wearing of masks and santiation is enforced. Unless they're locked down in their dorm rooms, I wonder if a lot of them have less space while watching on couches next to each other or in their apartment common areas?
Way it works here level 3 they close them level 1 or 2 open.

They're not fans of half and half.

Jacindas been nominated for nobel prize. According to another site her and Greta are the odds on favorite to win.

She's the poster child but it's really the director general of health doing things. She doing her job on the communicating/empathy part.
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
1. The multibillion dollar marijuana industry in the US disagrees with you.
The defining “shadow” power of the executive branch is discretion, usually in the context of how or IF a law is enforced. That’s why a cop doesn’t HAVE to jail you for an offense if they have a reason not to. In the case of state decriminalization of MJ, discretion is being used not to enforce federal drug laws in those states...for now. Because, make no mistake, they still could.

2. Do you actually think the current federal government would even consider stepping in to uphold a law requiring masks? From what I can see, the feds are one of the biggest sources of the fight against requiring them.
We’ve already had discussions on the quality of federal and state leadership in this country and others in this thread. Let’s leave that lie.

And as Umbran correctly points out, most public health orders are implemented and enforced at the state level. Barring some truly exotic fact situations- like, perhaps one state suing another over strictness or laxity of their handling the pandemic- the feds have no jurisdiction over state orders.

Everything I read in my skim through that doc was about employer/employee relationships. Stores/customers/etc are a different case. Check out these two examples:



Places like stores and service providers are actually forbidden from asking for proof of a medical condition that requires accommodations like service dogs or wheelchairs. Just claiming it is completely sufficient. AFAIK, this has never been challenged in the court for masks, but I suspect it will go the same way.
There’s critical differences.

First of all, things like wheelchairs and service dogs are explicitly covered under a variety of laws and case law as aids to help the differently abled. And since service dogs are the only universally recognized service animals in the USA, there HAS been pushback against those claiming non-canine service animals. Inquiries into those have NOT been disallowed, with victories for the businesses beginning to accumulate. Remember the airline’s disallowing the boarding a claimed emotional support peacock from one of its flights in 2018? They won. So did the airline that wouldn’t allow a passenger to fly with his emotional support pig in 2014.

Second, as pointed out before, masking orders fall under public health rules, not aids to the disabled. It’s a completely different set of laws. And far more onerous and invasive PH orders have been upheld by the SCOTUS.

This is the part that I find terrifying on a personal level. If I'm in a store and someone else refuses to wear a mask, there's little I can do personally to make them wear it. I could call the police and report it. But if the base charge needs to be trespassing or disturbing the peace, I'm relying on the store to ask the person to don a mask. If the store decides they don't want to get involved, there's nothing I can do. That's why I firmly believe we need much stricter mask laws; the current ones just don't cut it.
It doesn’t NEED to be a trespassing charge, that’s just the retailer’s trump card. As was done in 1918, if there is a masking order in place, you could simply report a violation to the authorities.

Now, whether they’re going to ENFORCE the order is another matter entirely. There’s at least one sheriff in Ohio who has publicly stated he won’t enforce such ordinances and actually ordered his deputies to go about their duties unmasked. Similarly, sheriffs in Denton, Houston, Montgomery, Gillespie, Upshur, Kerr, Gregg, Nacogdoches and Panola counties in Texas have likewise refused to enforce the Governor’s masking order, citing “unenforceability” and logistical issues. So far as I know, none of those 10 LEOs has gotten any kind of reprimand.

Plus, in certain circumstances, the person claiming the exemption goes a little too far. While I haven’t seen any reports lately, for a while, there were several people trying to support their flouting the regs with documents claiming to be from the ADA and other agencies. Some went as far as to include replicas of those agencies’ official seals on the documents. All of these are, of course, forgeries of federal documents. That’s a felony.

Others tried similar documents with entirely fake agencies and seals. That’s fraud.

In those cases, I advised anyone involved to get photos of the individuals ad get some contact info (if possible) and contacting the police.

The anti-vax movement is working very hard to prevent this exact thing, and they're having a depressing amount of success with
They’ve had some success convincing some of the general public that it’s a fight they can win, yes. But no case has gone to court, mostly for reasons already stated.

And even if such a case goes to court, the force of stare decisis behind a 115 year old branch of case law is considerable. Not many judges are going to want to buck that, even if they don’t agree. They’re going to want something solid to hang their robes on. So far, there really hasn’t been anything noteworthy in terms of a novel legal argument.
 
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Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
They’ve had some success convincing some of the general public that it’s a fight they can win, yes. But no case has gone to court, mostly for reasons already stated.
Anti-vaxxers seem lucky that vaccination has not been declared a fundamental health need leaving them charged with criminal neglect wrt their children
 

There’s critical differences.

First of all, things like wheelchairs and service dogs are explicitly covered under a variety of laws and case law as aids to help the differently abled. And since service dogs are the only universally recognized service animals in the USA, there HAS been pushback against those claiming non-canine service animals. Inquiries into those have NOT been disallowed, with victories for the businesses beginning to accumulate. Remember the airline’s disallowing the boarding a claimed emotional support peacock from one of its flights in 2018? They won. So did the airline that wouldn’t allow a passenger to fly with his emotional support pig in 2014.

Second, as pointed out before, masking orders fall under public health rules, not aids to the disabled. It’s a completely different set of laws. And far more onerous and invasive PH orders have been upheld by the SCOTUS.
...
And even if such a case goes to court, the force of stare decisis behind a 115 year old branch of case law is considerable. Not many judges are going to want to buck that, even if they don’t agree. They’re going to want something solid to hang their robes on. So far, there really hasn’t been anything noteworthy in terms of a novel legal argument.
I understand that there's critical differences. However, I think the ADA (and HIPAA, and a few other things) are the novel legal arguments that can be used against that 115 year old case law. I don't know of any cases that pit these against each other.

Also, as a side note, the reason that the "emotional support animal" cases you mention turned out that way is because emotional support animals are not recognized as service animals under the ADA. They are two critically different things; IIRC, dogs and miniature horses are the only animals that can be classified as actual service animals (although I saw a documentary about monkeys possibly doing the job too). I don't know of any case where a company has tried to block an actual service animal and won. The issue of masks would be much more akin to making accomodations for wheelchairs, oxygen, etc.

Now, whether they’re going to ENFORCE the order is another matter entirely. There’s at least one sheriff in Ohio who has publicly stated he won’t enforce such ordinances and actually ordered his deputies to go about their duties unmasked. Similarly, sheriffs in Denton, Houston, Montgomery, Gillespie, Upshur, Kerr, Gregg, Nacogdoches and Panola counties in Texas have likewise refused to enforce the Governor’s masking order, citing “unenforceability” and logistical issues. So far as I know, none of those 10 LEOs has gotten any kind of reprimand.
Its the LEOs that won't enforce it and don't make public statements that scare me more. I'd rather know what I'm dealing with up front. Also, I recognize that there's a little irony in me talking about how these orders might not be enforceable, but complaining about cops that feel the same way. However, I'm a random guy spouting internet armchair opinions about how the courts might rule, they're the ones that are supposed to be taking action to protect the public.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
I understand that there's critical differences. However, I think the ADA (and HIPAA, and a few other things) are the novel legal arguments that can be used against that 115 year old case law. I don't know of any cases that pit these against each other.
You seem to persist in misunderstanding those laws. It is entirely unclear upon what basis you feel they are a hindrance. Neither one of them poses any barrier to local mask ordinances.

There is already a solid precedent - disabled parking permits*. If you use a wheelchair, for example, you have to make an application for a permit/plate to allow you to park in handicapped parking. On that form, you must reveal to your state what condition you have that requires it, and your doctor has to certify the fact that you have this condition, and that it calls for an accommodation.

This has passed muster with HIPPA and the ADA since the very beginning. There is no legal issue with the government requiring a person with a disability to actually tell the government about that disability when they interact with that government concerning their disability! If you want a special accommodation, you do at some point need to prove you need it. Maybe not to a store owner, but to the government.

IIRC, dogs and miniature horses are the only animals that can be classified as actual service animals (although I saw a documentary about monkeys possibly doing the job too).
Dogs and miniature horses are the only animals that qualify under the ADA. State and local ordinances may allow other animals. And, you can do what you want in your own home. You can have a monkey do things for you if you want at home, but you cannot file an ADA complaint against a restaurant for not allowing it in their place of business.

"Emotional support" animals don't count, in large part because service animals are defined as being trained to do tasks for the person. While having an animal's companionship may well be mood-stabilising for many people, merely existing near you is not a "task", and typically requires no special training of the animal.

I don't know of any case where a company has tried to block an actual service animal and won. The issue of masks would be much more akin to making accommodations for wheelchairs, oxygen, etc.
Then, you have to remember that the ADA has the word "reasonable" all over the place. They need to make reasonable accommodation. And that doesn't necessarily mean "the specific accommodation desired by the disabled person." So, for example, an old building may have only narrow, steep staircases. Typically, that could call for an elevator as an accommodation. However, if the architecture cannot support an elevator, or the cost of installation would be too high, the business may not be required to put one in.

And, the ADA very specifically and explicitly does not count, "put employees or patrons at risk of harm," as reasonable. If there are employees present who are deathly allergic to dogs, you may not be allowed to bring in your service animal, for example.

So, in the middle of a pandemic, you cannot insist on entering a place of business without a mask. That puts other patrons at risk, and is not supported by the ADA. At all. The ADA specifically excludes this kind of behavior. So, I don't see why you think it becomes a defense of that behavior.




*as what we are effectively discussing is a "go out in public without a mask" permit..
 

Ryujin

Adventurer
I feel like my Region will be dropping back to Stage 2, at the least. The entire Province had something like 184 new cases over the course of two days, this week. Of those, over 40% were from just the city in which I live, which is roughly 3% of the Province's population.
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
The ADA is designed to let the differently abled individuals get about their lives independently, including mandates for things like wheelchair accessibility. Furthermore, the ADA has particular clauses that say it does not supersede regulations designed to inhibit the spread of disease. IOW, by its own terms, It doesn’t apply at all.

Nothing in this subchapter shall require an entity to permit an individual to participate in or benefit from the goods, services, facilities, privileges, advantages and accommodations of such entity where such individual poses a direct threat to the health or safety of others. The term "direct threat" means a significant risk to the health or safety of others that cannot be eliminated by a modification of policies, practices, or procedures or by the provision of auxiliary aids or services.
Additionaly, private clubs are immune to the requirements of the ADA (as they are to many other laws). So if you’re trying this legal argument against a retailer like Sam’s or Costco, you’ve got an additional hurdle to surmount.

HIPAA is designed to let patients prevent unauthorized use of their medical info by persons to whom it is given. But there’s that problematic “need to know” and “reasonable accommodations“ language to get by, in addition to the trespass laws. As Umbran has pointed out, if you’re making this legal claim, you have to provide evidence of it. You could refuse to provide such evidence at the store, but that means we go back to the default setting of private property: they don’t have to let you in.

Masking orders and similar PH regs are to protect the general welfare of the citizenry, and have been strongly supported in case law. of the three legal regimes here, it’s the big dog. It’s a VERY big dog.

Back in the 70s (as I recall) a different kind of masking order was being challenged on religious grounds. A particular (lucative and highly desired) job required a mask to protect the employees. Some employees who wanted the jobs had religious practices that prevented them from cutting their facial hair, and facial hair compromised the effectiveness of the masks. The employees lost. Even a claim of religious discrimination was insufficient to defeat the masking requirement.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Anti-vaxxers seem lucky that vaccination has not been declared a fundamental health need leaving them charged with criminal neglect wrt their children
Not sure how it works in the USA but here our Bill if Rights Act 1990 specifically gives you the right to refuse treatment.

They might be able to make it difficult to refuse. For example.

1. A job could require vaccination as part of the health and safety requirements.

2. Vaccination is required to access government benefits etc.

Yesterday we had 1 new case. Active cases declining, original outbreak basically wiped out new stuff linked to church.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Not sure how it works in the USA but here our Bill if Rights Act 1990 specifically gives you the right to refuse treatment.
We don't think we have a single blanket law on the matter.

There are cases where a guardian who refuses to allow a child to be treated may be considered abusing the child, and have the choice taken from them.
 

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