‘Social distancing inside’: Fox & Friends celebrates crowd protesting shutdown as NJ gym opens against state orders
Fox News (Screen Capture)

"Fox & Friends" is applauding a New Jersey gym owner and the crowd that's come to support his decision to re-open against state COVID-19 orders. New Jersey has the second-highest coronavirus death toll in the country, with more that 10,000 people succumbing to the virus.


All morning co-host Pete Hegseth has been reporting live from outside the gym in Bellmawr, where a crowd has grown to see the owner's act of civil disobedience that could lead to more coronavirus infections.

The crowd is filled with people protesting the shutdown order who have also turned the pandemic into politics. Some are holding signs, with at least one reading, "Stay Poor, Vote Democrat." Very few are wearing masks, no one is practicing social distancing. They are chanting, "USA! USA!" Studies show the louder someone's voice, the more coronavirus particles can travel and spread.

Hegseth, who infamously said last year he does not wash his hands and does not believe germs are "real" because he cannot see them, says gym members will be practicing social distancing "inside."

There are about 50 to 100 people standing close together outside the gym.

"We'll see what the governor does, trying to shut down a small business who's trying to make a living," Hegseth tells his co-hosts, who are broadcasting from their homes. He adds that the protestors are "yelling, 'Open New Jersey now,' and that's what you hear from the signs."

"Ultimately they feel like, 'Hey, we've flattened the curve, we've done our part, and now it's time to let people be responsible individuals.'"

"You guys have been a voice for millions," Hegseth tells the gym owner. They claim they do not meet the definition of catering to the "public" because they have "members." They say they're standing up for the 14th Amendment.

Hegseth tells them, "people are resonating with you and your message."

As of just after 8 AM the police had not yet shut the gym down.

Update –

Even bigger crowd: