With no regard for social distancing or wearing masks, hundreds of protesters came to the Massachusetts State House on Monday to deliver a message to the governor.
The protesters called on Gov. Charlie Baker to lift his declaration of a state of emergency and stay-at-home advisory aimed at limiting the spread of the coronavirus.
The protesters, including supporters of President Donald Trump, held signs reading “Tyranny is not Leadership,” “Governor Baker End Lockdown Hoax,” and “End Shutdown” and waved American flags and flags bearing Trump’s name.
"For what? For a lousy virus? A flu?" asked conservative talk radio host Jeffrey Kuhner.
Few of those gathered were wearing masks. Most were crowded together and not staying six feet apart as recommended for social distancing efforts. Similar protests were held over the weekend in Maine and Vermont.
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The demonstrators pointed to shuttered businesses and laid off workers and what they believe is a violation of their civil liberties, with houses of worship called on to severely limit the number of people they allow in.
"People are out of work right now," said Marquell Moorer of Boston. "This is not a game to be playing right now. I mean, people are losing their jobs. They lost their income and I think we really need to think heavily about this. Do we really need to be closed down for a flu?"
At least two trucks with banners reading “Trump Keep America Great 2020,” “All Lives Matter,” “Build the Wall,” and “Make Liberals Cry Again” also drove by to cheers from protesters.
Some on the fringes of the crowd stood for the heroes on the front lines of the pandemic.
"It's the health care workers who risk their lives to save everyone who's here today and we should honor and respect them by not adding to the people they have to take care of so they don't have to risk their lives any more than necessary," said Arline Isaacson of Boston.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.