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Happy Thanksgiving, Kids, Here’s Your Mask: CA County Issues Home Mask Mandate Days Before Holiday

Western Journal

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One Thanksgiving tradition involves a designated person carving the turkey. In Santa Cruz County, California, perhaps families can start a new tradition: designating someone to pass out masks by the door.

Santa Cruz County officials have implemented an indoor mask mandate, starting Sunday, that includes private homes, according to the San Jose Mercury News. If members of another family are present, you have to mask up.

“Unfortunately, a potential winter surge appears to be a significant threat to the health and safety of our community,” Santa Cruz County Health Officer Dr. Gail Newel said in a statement.

The Mercury News’ Melissa Hartman reported county officials are “not expecting residents to wear masks during indoor activities in which it is logistically difficult, such as eating, drinking, swimming, showering in a fitness facility or when obtaining medical or cosmetic services.”

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While eating is largely what Thanksgiving is all about, however, this means that when you’re not eating, the county’s nannies assumedly want you to don a facial covering.

“If you are gathering with extended family and friends, especially those who have traveled from outside the area or who are unvaccinated, caution is best,” Newel said.

“We want to try to get used to the idea of living with this virus and getting back to some sort of normalcy in activities, including being able to gather with people that we love and not have to withhold ourselves from our kids, our grandkids or our grandparents,” she said.

Newel also advised that those not comfortable with wearing a mask could meet outside. Because this is all about “getting back to some sort of normalcy.” Right.

What is the expiration date for the mandate? None whatsoever, although the county says it will be watching the case rate, test positivity rate and viral reproductive number, determined by averaging how many additional people someone infected with COVID goes on to infect.

In other words, this could very well be in place for Christmas, too.

“Those are the three main things to watch but our big concern is also saving lives so we will be watching deaths and, additionally, the impacts on our health care system,” Newel said.

“There has been quite an increase in hospitalizations in the last week to two weeks.”

One would think this might be a sign that COVID paternalism isn’t working; California as a whole is one of the most stringent states in terms of coronavirus policy, and Santa Cruz County, in the Bay Area, had over 68 percent of its residents fully vaccinated as of Nov. 22 with 74 percent having received at least one dose, according to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data.

Furthermore, the San Francisco Chronicle reported that cases in the Bay Area are currently lower than they were during the summer. However, officials feared a holiday spike, hence the mandate.

At least this is better than the rules in California last year, when the state Department of Public Health mandated that almost all gatherings with different households be held outdoors, last no more than two hours and have no more than three households involved.

Those guidelines, it’s worth noting, were announced at roughly the same time that Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom was infamously caught attending a maskless birthday party at a swanky, Michelin-starred Napa Valley restaurant called the French Laundry.

This year, it’s worth noting that Santa Cruz County’s announcement came less than two weeks after the governor extended California’s COVID emergency until March 2022. He then jetted off to Mexico for Thanksgiving — where one imagines he won’t be masking up indoors when he’s around other families in solidarity with the people of Santa Cruz County. You keep being you, Gavin Newsom.

But then, he’s hardly alone. Remember London Breed, the mayor of San Francisco, who was caught maskless at an indoor at an event in September — violating her own mask mandate?

“My drink was sitting at the table. I got up and started dancing because I was feeling the spirit and I wasn’t thinking about a mask,” she said at the time. “I was thinking about having a good time and in the process I was following the health orders.”

And then there was Nancy Pelosi, speaker of the House, who officiated at the wedding of oil heiress Ivy Getty last month. Notice something?

For Californians who aren’t elected officials, however, the message is obeisance. Take the editorial board of the Los Angeles Times, which urged all of its readers to follow similar protocols for Thanksgiving even if if it’s not law.

“The pandemic will end some day; they all do. But it will not happen this week. This year, health officials aren’t telling people to hunker down at home,” the Monday editorial read.

“But they are asking that we continue to be careful, to wear masks around others and to test before visiting with vulnerable friends and family. It seems the least we can do to avoid another terrible winter.”

Heck, maybe all of plebeian California could adopt this new Thanksgiving tradition. Someone carves the turkey, someone else passes out the masks.

It seems the least we can do and the pandemic will end some day. Just don’t ask when.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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Stranger Saves Teen Hit by Car, Then Disappears After Rescue

Western Journal

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Lily Irigoyen, 14, from Escondido, California, was headed to Westfield North County Mall with a friend to do some shopping on May 23 when Irigoyen’s life was turned upside down.

As she was crossing a street — using a crosswalk — a driver failed to stop at a stop sign and hit the teenager. She immediately blacked out.

Two other drivers saw what had happened and raced to help. Police later said that a female good Samaritan called 911 and contacted Irigoyen’s family using her cell phone, and a man performed CPR on the teen’s lifeless body — an act that would later turn out to have made all the difference.

The girl’s mother, Isabel Torres, remembers getting the call that broke her heart.



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“Her dad called me that she was in an accident and she was airlifted to the hospital,” she told KNSD.

Irigoyen had suffered a long list of serious injuries, including a damaged kidney, a broken arm, a broken leg, a broken hip and a punctured lung. Worst of all, she had also suffered a brain injury.

For three weeks, the teen was in a coma. Even after coming out of it, she had to stay at the hospital for six months, recovering. She finally made it home in August, and her mom has hope that she will recover.

“We’re getting there,” Torres told KNSD. “With time, I think she’s going to get better and better.”

Police later said that, while the driver who hit the teen was determined to be at fault, no criminal charges were made.

After a recent checkup, Irigoyen has a new goal: To find and thank the good Samaritan who saved her life.

“The doctor told her that everything that happened and she mentioned that, thanks to the person that assisted at the accident with the CPR, she always had air to her brain and for that main reason, they saved her life,” Torres explained.

“I just like felt, like happy, just the fact that someone had that kindness in their heart to help me was nice,” Irigoyen added. “I just want to say how grateful I am … that they helped me and that I’m alive now because of them.”



The man is believed to be a dental surgeon, according to KGTV, though he has not yet been identified or stepped forward.

“I think they’re angels,” a teary Torres told KGTV. “God put them there for a reason … I think it’s a great time to find them, and tell them what a great thing they did … What they did was just amazing.”

“They saved me!” said Irigoyen. “They’re the reason I’m here right now … I would just hug them. No words to express how thankful I am.”

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Lily Irigoyen, 14, from Escondido, California, was headed to Westfield North County Mall with a friend to do some shopping on May 23 when Irigoyen’s life was turned upside down. As she was crossing a street — using a crosswalk — a driver failed to stop at a stop sign and hit the teenager. She immediately blacked out. Two other drivers saw what had happened and raced to help. Police later said that a female good Samaritan called 911 and contacted Irigoyen’s family using her cell phone, and a man performed CPR on the teen’s lifeless body — an act that would later turn out to have made all the difference. The girl’s mother, Isabel Torres, remembers getting the call that broke her heart. “Her dad called me that she was in an accident and she was airlifted to the hospital,” she told KNSD. Irigoyen had suffered a long list of serious injuries, including a damaged kidney, a broken arm, a broken leg, a broken hip and a punctured lung. Worst of all, she had also suffered a brain injury. For three weeks, the teen was in a coma. Even after coming out of it, she had to stay at the hospital for six months, recovering. She finally made it home in August, and her mom has hope that she will recover. “We’re getting there,” Torres told KNSD. “With time, I think she’s going to get better and better.” Police later said that, while the driver who hit the teen was determined to be at fault, no criminal charges were made. After a recent checkup, Irigoyen has a new goal: To find and thank the good Samaritan who saved her life. “The doctor told her that everything that happened and she mentioned that, thanks to the person that…

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Brian Laundrie’s Parents Flee Florida Home as ‘For Sale’ Sign Appears Outside

Western Journal

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Brian Laundrie’s parents may be looking for a new place to live after weeks of scrutiny on the couple.

Their North Port, Florida, home now has a “For Sale by Owner” sign in the front yard, according to the New York Post.

The house became the site of a media circus, with outlets looking for answers in the death of Laundrie’s fiancee Gabby Petito and the whereabouts of Laundrie himself.

Petito’s remains were found at Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. Laundrie was found dead at the Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County, Florida in October.

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Laundrie’s lawyer announced that he had died by suicide, with a gunshot wound to the head.

As for Chris and Roberta Laundrie, rumors ran rampant that they knew the whereabouts of their son, who was the sole murder suspect in Petito’s death.

The Post reported that neighbors took advantage of the Laundrie couple having the spotlight, with some even renting their front yards to media outlets for up to $3,500 a week in order to pester the pair around the clock.

No charges have been filed against the parents, but their “lack of cooperation” at times during the investigation may have created unnecessary obstacles, according to a North Port police spokesman last month.

According to WNBC-TV, authorities mistook Roberta Laundrie for her son as she drove his Mustang home at the beginning of the manhunt, a move viewed as part of the parents’ resistance to complying fully with investigators early on.

“Other than confusion, it likely changed nothing. We just wanted people to better understand why we thought we knew Brian was in his home,” North Port Police spokesman Josh Taylor said Oct. 29, the outlet reported.

The family’s attorney, Steve Bertolino, has remained firm that his clients fully complied with the investigation, but was talking with law enforcement in November, WFLA-TV reported.

Still, there is no indication as of now that the parents will have charges against them.

If the couple decides to leave their home, they might want to consider changing their names and buying fake mustaches to protect their identity.

Based on the attitude of their current neighbors, it would not be surprising if they were met with hostility wherever they choose to move.

For now, the toughest task will be finding a new owner for the property, which has now become a symbol for one of the most highly followed crime stories of the century.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Brian Laundrie’s parents may be looking for a new place to live after weeks of scrutiny on the couple. Their North Port, Florida, home now has a “For Sale by Owner” sign in the front yard, according to the New York Post. The house became the site of a media circus, with outlets looking for answers in the death of Laundrie’s fiancee Gabby Petito and the whereabouts of Laundrie himself. Petito’s remains were found at Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming. Laundrie was found dead at the Carlton Reserve in Sarasota County, Florida in October. Laundrie’s lawyer announced that he had died by suicide, with a gunshot wound to the head. As for Chris and Roberta Laundrie, rumors ran rampant that they knew the whereabouts of their son, who was the sole murder suspect in Petito’s death. The Post reported that neighbors took advantage of the Laundrie couple having the spotlight, with some even renting their front yards to media outlets for up to $3,500 a week in order to pester the pair around the clock. No charges have been filed against the parents, but their “lack of cooperation” at times during the investigation may have created unnecessary obstacles, according to a North Port police spokesman last month. According to WNBC-TV, authorities mistook Roberta Laundrie for her son as she drove his Mustang home at the beginning of the manhunt, a move viewed as part of the parents’ resistance to complying fully with investigators early on. “Other than confusion, it likely changed nothing. We just wanted people to better understand why we thought we knew Brian was in his home,” North Port Police spokesman Josh Taylor said Oct. 29, the outlet reported. The family’s attorney, Steve Bertolino, has remained firm that his clients fully complied with the investigation, but was…

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