Rural Washington Towns Openly Rebel Against Governor Inslee’s Latest COVID Shutdowns

Residents of the clear-aired, fir tree-festooned, and sparsely-populated towns of Morton and Mossyrock, Washington held a Freedom Rally in “peaceful protest” over the weekend to defy the governor’s latest COVID shutdown orders. Hundreds of people swarmed the small town of Mossyrock to spend money, eat inside restaurants and raise a peaceful middle finger to the governor.

A good chunk of the populations of the two towns converged on Mossyrock on Saturday, whose mayor is openly defying Governor Jay Inslee’s order to shut down restaurants and impose more COVID shutdowns. By the looks of it, every store in town was open and masks were optional.

COVID lockdowns already killed the Morton Lumberjack Jubilee and the Mossyrock Blueberry Festival, during which the towns make most of their money for the year. Now Inslee extended his Thanksgiving shutdown into the New Year, killing Christmas sales.

Arminta Melis told KING 5 News Inslee’s shutdown will kill the towns.

What people don’t understand is those three events in those towns is what gets the towns by for the year because of the tourism.

They’re frustrated at being told what they can and can’t do in their homes, where they can and can’t shop. Wal-Mart and Target, and all these big box stores are open, but little mom and pop shops can’t be open…that ain’t right.

She’s right, that ain’t right.

The locals crowded Mossyrock’s cafe, sipped brew from the local espresso store, and crowded Nacho’s Mexican Restaurant to give the lockdown-afflicted town a boost. Rally goers were told to bring money to spend and they did. The peaceful protest was organized by the Washington Three Percenters.

The Chief of Police of both towns, Roger Morningstar, says he will not enforce Inslee’s lockdown.

Mossyrock Mayor Randall Sasser told KING 5 News that COVID is real, but lockdowns are killing people too.

We all understand there is an issue here but when it comes to shutting down businesses and not looking at all the other part of it, the domestic violence, the drug abuse, the alcoholism, all of those things – suicide rates – none of that stuff is really being talked about.”

Besides Mossyrock and Morton, there’s open defiance in many places in Washington, among them Spiffy’s Restaurant and Bakery in Chehalis. The restaurant, located on Interstate 5 between Portland and Seattle, is loved by travelers and locals alike (try their cinnamon rolls, they are muy delicioso) and is open for – gasp!indoor dining as a “peaceful protest” because owner, Rod Samuelson, wants his staff to keep getting a paycheck.

Inslee has now sicced the regulators on Spiffy’s.

Q 13 News reports that Inslee’s regulators have fined Spiffy’s more than $67,000 so far.

The state did send Labor and Industry Board investigators to the restaurant, where Spiffy’s supporters lined up to “film and keep the peace.” Some of them wore tactigal gear and carried semi-automatic weapons, according to The Daily Chronicle.

Samuelson said he has no plans to close despite the fines. The industry board has threatened criminal action if he continues to violate the restrictions.

Inslee said Tuesday that businesses caught violating the rules can be fined up to $9,000 per day or per violation. He also said the vast majority of businesses were in compliance.

When Inslee says “the vast majority of businesses” are in compliance that means there are a lot of businesses blowing off the rules. And it’s no wonder. Inslee appears to forget that Mossyrock, Morton and Chehalis aren’t Seattle. Thank God.