(Lansing, MI – October 22, 2020) – The American Freedom Law Center and the Great Lakes Just Center filed a federal civil rights lawsuit on behalf of Resurrection School, a Catholic School located in Michigan, and several minor children and their parents, challenging the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services’ (MDHHS) draconian restriction requiring children in grades K through 5 to wear masks throughout the school day.
The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan. It advances several claims arising under the United States Constitution and Michigan law, including the Michigan Constitution.
The MDHHS order came on the heels of the Michigan Supreme Court decision declaring that Governor Whitmer’s executive orders issued after April 30,2020, were invalid because she lacked the authority to issue them. Undaunted by the rule of law, as is the case with most power-hungry, Left-wing politicians, Governor Whitmer pledged to use alternative means to impose her will on the people of Michigan. The challenged MDHHS order is one of those alternative means.
As alleged in the Complaint:
In accordance with the teachings of the Catholic faith, Resurrection School believes that every human has dignity and is made in God’s image and likeness. Unfortunately, a mask shields our humanity. And because God created us in His image, we are masking that image. Masks also make us anti-social. They interfere with relations. As the Catholic faith teaches, we are relational beings. And our existence as relational beings points to the Holy Trinity. A mask is disruptive to this essential element of the Catholic faith, and it is disruptive to the teaching of young children for these and other reasons.
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Wearing a face mask during this current and highly politicized pandemic has become a form of expression. The wearing of a face mask, when socially distanced or when the situation and condition make doing so extreme or unreasonable, is for many, including Plaintiffs, a symbol of oppression and government tyranny. It is a sign that the wearer is willing to surrender his or her freedoms to the government. Plaintiffs oppose this message and thus they oppose the requirement to wear a face mask because it conveys this message. Moreover, Plaintiffs oppose the mask mandate because science and data have shown that wearing a face mask pursuant to the mandate is not medically required or necessary, and it is harmful to the wearer.
At the end of the day, this case is about stopping government tyranny.
CASE UPDATE: (February 16, 2021): We filed our opening brief in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit.