A northern Kentucky bar owner shared video of himself and dozens of customers flouting the governor’s mask mandate.
Patrick Townsend, owner of Town’s End Bar and Grill in Florence, boasted in the video that he would not obey Gov. Andy Beshear’s new order requiring masks in public to fight the spread of the coronavirus, reported WXIX-TV.
“What we’re saying right now is, f*ck you, we’re not wearing any masks,” Townsend says in the Facebook Live video. “We are Americans — we’re going to do what we want and we want to have fun.”
Townsend then taunts the Democratic governor, and the video then pans along a line of about two dozen cheering revelers standing arm in arm and not wearing masks.
Boone County, where the bar is located, has seen new cases of the coronavirus jump in the past two weeks from fewer than three to about 16 per day.
Townsend later apologized for his “abrasive” language after the video was widely shared on social media, but not for violating the governor’s mask order.
“It is a basic intrusion of our civil liberties,” Townsend said. “Before he has complained about President Trump trying to control what the states do. Well, he’s doing the same thing with all the county commissions and mayors. Let them do their job.”
Townsend said he placed out hand sanitizer for customers and spaced outdoor tables six feet apart, and his employees are supposed to wear masks.
A woman who lives near the bar complained that the state’s schools and businesses will be forced to shut down again if Kentuckians don’t follow Beshear’s mask order.
“We all have to do what we can,” said neighbor Jamie Baynum. “We have to give something up. We have to not be selfish and just do what we can to stop the spread. This is a pandemic and it’s not even close to being over.”
I understand many people disagree with the Governor’s mask mandate and that is totally fine
But I don’t think If I did that I would handle it the way this bar in Florence, Ky did
Feels like asking to get a response…. pic.twitter.com/p28dJURmT7
— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) July 12, 2020