New Jersey authorities are looking into an anti-mask protest planned for Saturday at the Freehold Raceway Mall, according to NJ.com.
The protest has been advertised on social media. State officials said that one event was being organized by a group called the Patriot Party of New Jersey, although the origins of the protest are unclear.
Gov. Phil Murphy said “the last thing we need right now” are confrontations between store employees, owners and “knucklehead[s]… trying to make a political statement.”
The state has since June limited retailers to half capacity and both customers and staff are required to wear masks indoors. The state has had difficulty mitigating the spread of the Covid-19 throughout the pandemic.
“At a time when businesses have been struggling, to put them in a position where they may have to close their doors seemed hard to fathom for us,” said State Police Superintendent Colonel Patrick Callahan, according to the report.
Covid-19 has been linked to nearly 24,300 deaths in New Jersey. About 1.29 million residents are fully vaccinated. Cases have been rising over the last month or so. [NJ.com] — Dennis Lynch