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Mayor Eric GarcettiYouTube / screenshot

LOS ANGELES, December 3, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) — Mayor Eric Garcetti of Los Angeles issued a new emergency order instructing residents to stay at home and closing non-essential businesses. His order threatens strict punishments for those who fail to comply with it.

The new restrictions in Los Angeles come just a few days after Los Angeles County, which is comprised of a number of cities other than Los Angeles, put similar directives in place.

Garcetti’s order is effective immediately and instructs residents to “refrain from gathering” with people outside their own household “wherever possible.” Nevertheless, religious services, as well as protests, are allowed outdoors, because they are protected by the Constitution.

The order declares that “all persons living within the City of Los Angeles are hereby ordered to remain in their home.”

It restricts all travel, including walking, bicycling, driving and using public transportation, unless people are participating in select activities exempt from the order.

Although travel is prohibited, the order allows parks, trails, and beaches to operate during certain hours. Residents are permitted to swim, surf, run, or walk, but they are forbidden to sunbathe, sit, or use playground equipment.

Garcetti has also ordered all Los Angeles businesses to cease operations requiring in person attendance. Instead, Garcetti told employees to telecommute and work remotely.

Businesses exempt from this order include healthcare operations, grocery stores, liquor stores, gas stations, auto repair shops, banks, hardware stores, handyman services, and laundry services.

Garcetti also restricted restaurants to drive-thru and take-out, with the exception of food services provided by health care facilities.

Even though Garcetti’s order gives a long list of exemptions, many Los Angeles residents are once again prevented from making a living and supporting their families.

Garcetti threatened those who do not follow his order with “fines and imprisonment,” as well as shutting off their utility services, such as electricity and water.

The mayor had been threatening people with shutting off power to their buildings since March. At the same time, he also encouraged residents to report their neighbors if they were not complying with his orders, saying, “You know the old expression about snitches? Well, in this case, snitches get rewards.”

The newest order exempts “young children at risk of suffocation and people with certain disabilities” from wearing a face mask. In reality, however, it is impossible for those people to go to any businesses considered “essential,” since all businesses “must require workers and customers to wear face coverings.”

“Business owners and operators are authorized to refuse service to any individual who fails to wear a face covering and I strongly encourage business owners/operators to do so,” Garcetti added.

With 4 million residents, Los Angeles is the second-largest city in the nation. Los Angeles County counts 10 million residents. Throughout the year, less than 8,000 residents have died with COVID-19 in the entire county.