Quarantine, or house arrest?

Aidan Johnson, Writer/Layout

As the nation grapples with the Coronavirus pandemic, governments across the country have implemented a variety of policies and mandates to try and curb it’s spread.  In Washington, State Governor Inslee has issued a proclamation ordering citizens to shelter in place, except for exercise and essential travel. This has led to rising tensions between those who support the orders, and those who want to reopen the state, with many people harboring strong opinions over the issue. The argument revolves largely over civil liberties, and constitutional rights, verses the possible human death toll. The decisions being made currently will likely have long lasting effects on issues such as government control, constitutional liberties, executive action, and many others.

The Stay home orders for Washington were announced by Governor Inslee in late march. Initially lasting for only two weeks, it was extended for the entirety of April, and more recently for the entire month of May. In this time “non-essential” businesses are shut down, and citizens are under instruction to remain home as much as possible, or face legal reprisals.

Views on the stay home orders vary from person to person, we interviewed several local residents to get their views on the matter. Shane Kalb is a junior at Capital High School, he was asked how the stay home orders are effecting him, 

“It’s been difficult not being able to see friends, and not being able to go anywhere,” he said.

When asked if he believed the stay home orders were constitutional, he answers unequivocally, 


Several lawsuits have been filed over the stay home orders, claiming they violate civil liberties, and many people are echoing the same sentiment. At a rally to reopen Washington in olympia, on the 9th of May, many speakers shared the same belief. Protesters vented their frustration at loss of jobs, and what they view as government infringing on their most sacred rights. 

The fight between freedom, and public health is sure to continue, and most likely heat up in the next several months. How far it will go is anyone’s guess, however perhaps we can get a glimpse in the words of one store owner, who has refused to close his business during the quarantine do to it being constitutionally protected, “the only way they will shut me down is if they send guys in here with guns.”