Litigating COVID

Our law firm keeps an index of litigation involving COVID. Today it is 306 pages long. I calculate that each business day since the start of the pandemic there are filed in the United States about 128 separate lawsuits.

The variety of lawsuit claims is as stunning as the number of them; some claims are expectable, some bordering on frivolity (perhaps not to the plaintiffs), some rooted in great pain or in our Constitution.

Forgive this over-long post. Below is a list of some of the lawsuits filed just in the last two weeks:

Suits claiming: defective hand sanitizers, gloves, breathalizers, wipes; illegal sales taxation of masks; disabled people with greater vulnerabilities to COVID suffered website discrimination impeding access to safety products; cruise ships failed to provide COVID testing; among very many employee suits, that people were fired or mistreated because they insisted on personal safety accommodations or, in one case, on safety accommodations to prisoners; failure to provide time off under the Family Medical Leave Act; failure to make reasonable workplace accommodations for disability; failure to accommodate attacks of panic breathlessness triggered by COVID anxiety; failure to refund monies paid for a whole season of access to amusement parks or colleges where attendance was cancelled due to COVID.

The Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) sued the Federal Bureau of Prisons for failure to release COVID statistics. The US Chamber of Commerce sued Homeland Security for using COVID as a pretense to completely change the existing law on admitting highly skilled immigrants to the US, imperiling the economy. Parents sued a Board of Education for ordering children to attend school during the pandemic.

Many tenants sued for wrongful eviction and many owners sued for wrongful foreclosure in violation of local or State laws barring same. Many theaters and houses of worship sued to permit group attendance. One person sued based on curfews being unconstitutional.

Seems that many plaintiffs believe that wearing masks is itself a health hazard, denying breathers access to oxygen. Some suits claim masks are unconstitutional as they deprive people of free speech that can be understood.

A public service organization sued the United States seeking details of the expenditrue of two billion dollars for R&D for fighting COVID and for ordering millions of doses of as-yet-unapproved vaccines.

All that said, I must confess that my favorite suit of the last two weeks was brought by the owners of an adult entertainment venue, denied the right to hold out-of-doors strip shows and lap dances. I have no comments to make on this last-mentioned law-suit, except to say that in America I guess everything is worthy of being litigated in the name of freedom.

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