Warning: Story contains graphic language
LOS ANGELES, Calif. — Some upset Los Angeles County residents had enough of the new COVID-19 restrictions that were put in place last week and decided to make their feelings known to the woman who was responsible: Dr. Barbara Ferrer.
Ferrer is the director of the Los Angeles Department of Public Health and was the one to implement new restrictions, that included a ban on outdoor dining at restaurants, last week right before the Thanksgiving holiday. The new measure enraged business owners since they had spent the little money they had to be in compliance with previous requirements to stay open, only to then be shut down with little notice.
Anti-lockdown protesters marched to Ferrer's home in the Elysian Heights neighborhood to make their opposition to the new lockdowns loud and clear.
Among the crowd were business owners, restaurant workers, and supporters of President Trump. Officers with the Los Angeles Police Department stood guard outside Ferrer's home.
Angela Marsden, the owner of Pineapple Hill Saloon & Grill, told Townhall this was the first protest she had ever attended in her life. Holding back tears, Marsden explained the new restrictions have her employees "terrified" about their livelihoods right before Christmas.
"They shut us down. I kept changing, doing everything they wanted. I did the plexiglass, I did temperature checks. They reopened us, things started to pick up, they shut us down again. I went through my [Paycheck Protection Program] in two months. I have a disaster loan that's almost gone. I've spent $100,000 doing the changes they wanted me to do," Marsden said.
"All of us had to make those changes, all of us had to do that, and they shut us down...I finally had enough. I can't do it anymore. Somebody's got to do something and say something," she added.
Marsden said her message to Ferrer, who is not a medical doctor and holds a Ph.D. in Social Welfare, is to reverse the order or, at a minimum, shut down the places that are not following the rules and let the businesses who are in compliance stay open.
"You live in a house. My people live in apartments with kids and they don't even know how they're going to eat. So have a f**king heart!" Marsden said.
Britney, a bartender, said she was protesting because she needs to be able to work. Explaining how she recovered from COVID-19, Britney said there are ways to be able to have restaurants and bars open while keeping the patrons safe.
"I have no income, absolutely no income, and unemployment is $200 a week. And that's going to run out in, I think, a month...How are we supposed to support our families on $200?"
The city of Pasadena is the only place in L.A. County not banning outdoor dining because it has its own health department.
While the gathering was overall peaceful, some of Ferrer's neighbors came out to tell the protesters to leave. They were upset some people in the protesting crowd were not wearing masks. The two sides hurled insults back and forth with each other, with the LAPD trying to keep them separate.
Verbal arguments are breaking out between anti-lockdown protesters and people who live in the neighborhood, they are not happy the protesters are there. pic.twitter.com/CWI3GDjyKM— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) November 30, 2020
More people here now, and a bit of a shouting match erupting between the protesters and a resident on this street. pic.twitter.com/SQ6YYZ2FcB— Laura J. Nelson ?? (@laura_nelson) November 30, 2020
The protest lasted about an hour and broke up with no major incident occurring.