Westporter Sues Lamont; Demands Freedom Of Assembly

The CDC says that to prevent the spread of COVID-19, Americans should avoid gathering in groups.

Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont signed an executive order, restricting public gatherings to no more than 5 people.

Westport resident Bruce Miller believes that violates his constitutional rights. So — while others with the same belief march in protest, or storm state capitols — he sued.

The lawsuit — filed in US District Court in New Haven earlier this month — says that Lamont exceeded federal guidelines, and exaggerated the pandemic’s risks.

While some state residents protested in Hartford, Westporter Bruce Miller took a different route. He sued the governor.

Miller — who is representing himself — said:

The rule is a violation of the Constitutional rights to freedom of assembly, association, privacy and the right to be secure in one’s home. CT state law gives the governor no power to issue such (an) order,

Now, when the curve has been bent, hospitalizations are down, and the virus has been shown to be far less deadly than believed when the executive orders were issued, there is now no further reason to suspend the Bill of Rights.

Attorney General William Tong replied:

Our state constitution and state laws grant the Governor broad authority to protect Connecticut residents and families in a public health emergency, and his executive orders have been very clearly constitutional and fully legally justified.

45 responses to “Westporter Sues Lamont; Demands Freedom Of Assembly

  1. So, his constitutional rights are more important than people dying? My neighbor here in Westport was the first death! My cousin just died , young and healthy !!
    Where are my rights to stay alive ???
    Selfish and obviously unaffected YET!!

    So many people are so self entitled until they get affected!!! Maybe we should counter sue

  2. Adrian Little

    Your right to freedom of assembly ends when to do so may spread a fatal disease.
    You absolutely have the right to your day in court but in the meantime You do not have the right to endanger my life by being a jerk.

  3. Rozanne Gates

    Is he serious? Talk about frivolous law suits. This guy could be a carrier and be the cause of unnecessary deaths. But he obviously doesn’t consider other people’s lives as important as his petulant need to behave like an idiot.

    • Jack (Sensible) Backiel

      He’s obviously a loser looking for attention! Maybe he’ll next launch another lawsuit to be able to yell “FIRE” in a crowded movie theater! He’s obviously a loser.

  4. William F. Gibson

    And, just as the “Freedom of Speech” protection in the First Amendment does NOT allow one to shout “Fire” in a crowded theatre, the “Freedom of Assembly” does NOT allow one to endanger the lives of others. Doing so, in this environment, is potentially injurious to others … the suit will be thrown out of court.

  5. Jacque O'Brien

    I find it ironic that the one picture in the article shows “Live free or Die.” I know what it means, but does he realize that by by living free, many could die? How ridiculous!

  6. Leslie Riback

    Mr. Miller needs to redirect his energies and money towards so many causes that could use his help instead of filing a frivolous lawsuit. My mother died 3 weeks ago. I have at least 5 additional close friends who have lost a loved one. When citizens are irresponsible and ignorant, it is the government’s job to step in and protect them, whether or not they are worthy. It sounds like Mr. Miller is a very angry gentleman with too much time on his hands. When he loses his lawsuit he should be required to pay the legal fees for the state instead of it coming out of taxpayers’ dollars. In a time of crisis it is pathetic that he feels compelled to do this.

    • Lynn Untermeyer Miller

      Leslie, I’m so sorry to hear the sad news about your mother. And sorry too, that people such as this compound your pain with their capricious, thoughtless & selfish behavior. Thinking of you
      & sending you and your family my deepest condolences.

  7. Valerie Gutman

    Good for him!

    • Michael Pettee

      Which part is good? The part about wanting to confirm that the Governor has clear authority? Or the part about feeling free to spread a communicable disease between himself and others in his own community by not complying with known and verified precautions?

  8. Born a jerk, die a jerk.

  9. Bonnie Erickson

    I don’t know if the virus has been embellished or not. I don’t know if masks are positives or negatives. I don’t know if this gentleman has a death wish for himself or others. What I do know is I have lost 9 people to the virus to date. My partner has lost his share of friends and associates, too. I also know Abraham Lincoln got it right: He who represents himself has a fool for a client.

  10. Mary Schmerker

    I am so pleased to see these responses. I, unfortunately, live in Texas now. Our Governor is more concerned with pleasing the President than he is with our safety. The Houston Chronicle yesterday ( May 21) reported that: “Republican political operatives are recruiting “extremely pro Trump ” doctors to go on television to prescribe reviving the US economy as quickly as possible, with out waiting to meet the safety benchmarks proposed by the Centers for Disease Control and prevention to slow the spread of the new coronavirus.” Last night on the local Houston CBS station a doctor showed the possible spike in cases for the month of June that Texas would incur due to the quickly relaxed safety regulations. It was sobering. Be pleased that the Governor of Connecticut is more concerned with the safety of everyone than he is with political expediency.

    • Susan, He looks familiar. Did he graduate from Staples around 1967? He definitely looks familiar.

      • Jack, please see my 1:24pm post below.
        The Bruce Miller at the Playhouse is NOT the guy suing the Governor.

  11. His sign should read “Live Free AND Die.”

  12. In CT. 10% of the people who are diagnosed with covid 19 die. I believe our priority should be doing everything we can do reduce the number of deaths, not suing our govenor and other officials who are trying to protect us in this very frightening time.

  13. Stephanie Bass

    Weird town ….

    >

  14. These Covidiots thrive on the attention. Don’t even take note, much less report. Please.

  15. I believe it is right to question the governor’s authority to indefinitely suspend our freedoms. Governments don’t bestow our rights upon us, they are responsible for protecting our rights. No one is suggesting that anyone be compelled to assemble. If you want to stay home to protect yourself from the virus, you are free to do that as well. That’s what freedom means.

    • Michael Pettee

      This is a communicable disease, so you are not simply talking about infringement on your own freedom. Quite some time ago we did in fact give rights to federal and state governments to control the spread of communicable diseases. It is fine to entertain questions about the clarity of authority, but you are not free to spread a known communicable disease to others.

      • Governments don’t have “rights,” they have authority. And, the authority in this case should be limited and temporary. My concern is the indefinite nature of the Governor’s orders and the fact that there is no logical reason to say 5 people grouped socially distanced outside is less dangerous than 10 people grouped socially distanced outside. And can we have one group of 5 next to another group of 5 as long as they don’t know each other and aren’t “together”? It really makes no sense.

        • James Westphal

          Very well said Karen. Citizens have the right (even the obligation) to question the exercise of that authority, whether in the courts or in public debate.

          I certainly don’t have a problem with the government curtailing the activities of citizens in a crisis like this. But our policies would benefit from more constructive dialogue with different viewpoints rather than just blanket acceptance of all government decisions. We know, for example, that a person over 65 is more than 20x likely to die of COVID 19 than somebody under 65. We also know now (after being told differently before) that masks help to stop the spread the disease. A more robust discussion around issues like these — rather than a “how dare you question the government when it’s trying to help you?” — would likely have done more to stop the tragedy faced by elderly in nursing homes.

        • If you don’t think it makes sense, then you are pretty dense.

          Asymptomatic carriers can spread the virus to others in the community. I’m sorry that people like you and the person filing the frivolous lawsuit are too clueless to understand.

          I hope that you and your family stay safe. More importantly, I hope that through your ignorance you don’t unknowingly pass the virus to someone trying to avoid it.

  16. Bruce Miller @ Westport Country Playhouse writes…
    I am NOT the Bruce Miller who is suing the Governor. I AM in favor of social distancing and masks. Though I feel fine and I am asymptomatic, I still wear a mask. Until everyone is tested – by a reliable test – we all must be careful in social situations. Masks are as much about protecting others as keeping ourselves safe. It’s too bad that other Miller guy will waste the court’s time with his frivolous suit.

  17. Dermot Meuchner

    Mr. Miller is the latest Darwin Award winner! He’s now a full fledged member of The Confederacy Of Dunces. Bravo!

  18. Tammy Leichter

    Hospitalizations and cases are down because of mitigation and distancing practices not because enough time has passed.
    Some people. Ugh😫

  19. Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone

  20. Dr Frank E Accardi

    “ Constitutional” rights end where and when they infringe on the rights of others .
    We empower our leaders to exercise good governance to protect and defend the nation whether it be war ,famine or pestilence.
    Personal freedoms do not allow us to ignore or infringe upon the “common good” , the pursuit of happiness and or the well being of our fellow citizens.
    Respectfully,
    Frank Accardi

  21. One a Jerk , always a Jerk …

  22. Dick Lowenstein

    Let those who want to assemble using pre-Covid-19 rules hang out together., but at there own risk. Just stay away from the rest of us cautious, considerate folks. Tell is where we should send the flowers.

  23. Hanne Jeppesen

    Nice to see most comments here do NOT support this guy. I live 30 miles north of San Francisco (Concord Ca) and on a local news site, many more would be in agreement with this joker, fortunately not all, but those that support the SIP are in minority, and it seems the site favor the more conservative voices, as some of my comments don’t get posted.

    By the way I lived in Westport 1967 and 1968 (au pair) I loved Memorial Day, we would go to Compo Beach and I remember the parade downtown. In 1969 I was living in New York City, but still went to Westport for Memorial Day week-end because I had still had friends there, and a 3 day week end in Westport was so much more fun than in NYC

  24. Karen Solicito

    He’s right about one thing: It’s not as bad as we first thought – it’s much worse. This virus was first thought to be a problem affecting only the elderly and that should’ve been reason enough to put a mask on. Now it’s impacting our young people and children who suffer horribly with it. A 30 yr old local fitness professional died from it, a 40 yr old broadway actor had a leg amputated because of it and is still on life support, my own 14 yr old nephew suffered from the Kawasaki-like disease the virus manifests itself as in children (he is okay now). But this guy thinks it’s okay to distract the Governor during a pandemic because he’s relatively mildly inconvenienced? Talk about being unaware of your privilege.

  25. This is my last comment about this loser. He’d fit in well in Brazil. Brazil’s right-wing leader, an ideological ally of President Donald Trump, has repeatedly played down the threat of the coronavirus, dismissing it as a “little flu.” Brazil will pass Russia this week to secure the #2 slot with the most cases in the world! MBGA, Make Brazil Great Again.

    • Bill Boyd Staples 66

      I’d like to see westporters express themselves without resorting to calling people “jerk…idiot..and loser.”

  26. Richard Craig

    There’s always the litigious one…….I
    don’t like the extended isolation any more than the next person but people’s health trumps the need to gather because “we” need to protect us from our indepent inclinations to flout safety measures. Is about 100,000 deaths not evidence that this is not an exaggeration?!
    Use zoom if you must congregate virtually.

  27. I agree with Bruce Miller. The curve is over. We are LONG past being ok to return to work. GA, TX and FL are back working and they’re fine AND FL is full of old people! People trying to destroy the U.S. economy just to win an election?? … a holes. Horrid people. Groups of 5? … really? what genius picked that arbitrary number? He’s throwing his Liberal weight around. Look at the crap states .. run by Liberals. Look at the well run states … run by Republicans. Does anyone look at data and scenarios … use their well educated brain .. and make up their own minds anymore????

    • FYI: “The curve is over” is absolute crap, Diana, and the varied, partial opening of every state will cause a spike in cases…as you ignore all medical warings, I hope you are not one of the new cases.

  28. Frank E Accardi MD

    Reply to May 27 commentary on thinking for oneself.

    COVID 19
    In less than 6 months 100,000 Americans deaths.
    Vietnam War 1955-1975,
    58,000 combat dead and wounded.

    Analysis. of Commentary May 27
    Half Truths.
    Dubious Assumptions .
    Conspiracy Theory .
    Insults and Innuendo .
    All just barely focused through a cracked prism of political opinion.

    Such a horrible loss of life demands and deserves the respect of scrupulous fact gathering ,intellectual rigor and the application of reasoned logic and analysis by “the well educated brain”.
    There are real experts and honest voices and valid dissent to help one decide.
    The rest is just logorrhea.

    Respectfully,
    F Accardi

  29. https://portal.ct.gov/AG/Opinions/2002-Formal-Opinions/Honorable-Kevin-Sullivan-Legislative-Office-Building-2002013-Formal-Opinion-Attorney-General-of-Conn

    Link to Attny Gen. opinion that notes that the governor cannot change law during emergencies

    This governor, how does he create his EO’s, you wonder? Its simple…he/his staff gets a phone call or email asking for one .. then BAM, he writes it and publishes it the next day. Yes. That is what has been happening. No thought goes into it..

    He thinks he’s a king.

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