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Confessions of a California Quarantine Outlaw


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My latest crime: singing in church.

Rob Crisell

July 12, 2020

I’ve got a confession to make: California’s quarantine has turned me into a criminal.

Since Governor Newsom and his Committee of Public Safety (oops — I mean the Department of Public Health) shut down the economy, I have grown adept at flouting quarantine-related laws. To paraphrase the White Queen in Through the Looking-Glass, I’ve sometimes broken as many as six ridiculous laws before breakfast.

Over the past weekend, however, my outlaw behavior reached a new low: I repeatedly ventured out into public spaces, often for frivolous reasons. I attended two parties in which no one wore masks and where food and drink were served with flagrant disregard for CDPH standards. I shook hands several times. I hugged six people.

Shameful, I know. If Governor Newsom had been there, he would have shaken his beautifully coiffured head in dismay and wagged his manicured finger at me.


But that’s not the worst of it. On Sunday, I broke a law that had been on the books only three days since the governor announced it at his most recent press conference on July 1:

I sang in church.

While my voice has been called criminal in the past, this was something else entirely.


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