In the name of public health, peace be upon it, magistrate Larry Hogan (R) of the People’s Republic of Maryland, did invoke the power to prohibit free association. Having twice said, f**k that, Shawn Marshall Myers has been fined 5,000 dollars and sentenced to one year in prison.
Shawn Marshall Myers, after a bench trial before District Court Judge W. Louis Hennessy, was convicted of two counts of Failure to Comply with an Emergency Order. Immediately after the trial, Judge Hennessy sentenced Myers, 42 of Hughesville, to 1 year of active incarceration to be served at the Charles County Detention Center. Upon release, Myers will be on unsupervised probation for a period of three years.
The People’s Republic of Maryland must be invoking the little known illegal gatherings Clause of the Constitution. The one that doesn’t exist. As opposed to the one that does exist. That thing in the First Amendment that prohibits restrictions on “the right of the people peaceably to assemble.”
The state can prohibit assembly that is not peaceful though there is some question about the actual definition of peaceful. Destruction of other people’s property, stealing that property, and torching the premises have been, repeatedly, referred to as peaceful when it advances certain political goals.
In Myers’ case, police instructed him to disperse what is in progressive legal jargon referred to as a “large party” but refused. He reportedly suggested that no one leave. He was arrested, fined, and sentenced.
I’m sure he has since realized that what he should have done is instructed his guests to quickly craft a few signs accusing the police of systemic oppression and then encouraged them to loot and burn the neighbor’s homes. It is, after all, highly likely one of those neighbors ratted him out in the first place and in the parlance of the political left, had it coming.