Thousands gather, protest stay-at-home order in US state
Thousands of protesters laid siege on Madison, the capital of the US state of Wisconsin, on Friday to compel the state government to relax the stay-at-home order it imposed to halt the spread of COVID-19.
The irate crowd besieged the Wisconsin Capitol, which houses both chambers of the Wisconsin legislature along with the state Supreme Court and the Office of the Governor, demanding the recall of Governor Tony Evers.
According to the New York Times, the “Reopen Wisconsin” rally was one of America’s largest gatherings to date to condemn stay-at-home orders enacted by state and local governments.
Images circulating on social media showed the protesters tightly packed, breaking social distancing guidelines.
The governor had extended a subsisting stay-at-home order which required residents to practice social distancing and close nonessential businesses until May 26.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported protesters cheering “USA” and circulated petitions to recall Evers, and saying “Death…. is preferable to communism.”
Some of the protesters reportedly flaunted American flags and brandished assault-style rifles.
According to Wisconsin Department of Health Services, there were 5,052 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 257 deaths as of Thursday, April 23.