The owner of Idaho’s Hardware Brewing Co. told the “Todd Starnes Radio Show” Tuesday that she reopened her business despite threats from the state because she cannot afford to keep its doors closed due to “tyrannical” state orders.
Christine Lohman said the response from the community has been overwhelming. She said the brewery has seen about 10 times the amount of customers during the four days its opened at the end of the week. She said some of the customers came from as far as San Diego.
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“They are not coming here for our brews—which, of course, are great and our burgers, which are great—they’re coming here because they’re looking for hope,” she said. She continued, “We’ve unmasked liberty.”
Lohman told Todd Starnes, the host of the show, that she was in violation of Gov. Brad Little‘s “stay healthy” order and could be stripped of her alcohol beverage license.
KTVB reported that she was given the letter from state police that said, “If you continue to stay open in violation of the Stay Healthy Order, your actions will constitute an ongoing violation of the foregoing Title 23 and public health laws and can result in an administrative violation against and potential revocation of Hardware Brewing Company retail alcohol beverage license.”
Lohman found herself in a similar position that many restaurant owners now face: either abide by state orders and be financially ruined, or take their chances be reopening. Lohman told the radio show that she tried for weeks to abide by so-called “curbside pickups” but that was not viable.
“People aren’t going to drive 35 or 40 miles for me to come out in a hazmat suit and hand them a burger at their car,” she said. “So we were going broke.”
Little, a Republican, told KTVB that he changed the state’s order from “stay home” to “stay healthy,” and loosened some restrictions.
“We’re encouraging people to get out more because of the great progress we made,” he told the station. “But all those other criteria about social distancing, good hygiene, particularly one of the most important to stay home if you’re not feeling well at least until you have enough time to determine if you have the symptoms and then you can get tested.”
Lohman, who said she voted for Little, said the state has no right to select which businesses survive and which ones fail. She said other businesses need to “stand up” in the face of tyranny.
“This is essentially Marshall Law,” she told Starnes. “It was just not declared.”