Protesters gather in Scottsdale to oppose city’s mask mandate

Jun 24, 2020, 1:00 PM | Updated: 7:18 pm
(Twitter Photo/@lukeforstner)...
(Twitter Photo/@lukeforstner)
(Twitter Photo/@lukeforstner)

PHOENIX – Protesters gathered at Scottsdale City Hall Wednesday to fight against the city’s face covering mandate.

Scottsdale Councilman Guy Phillips organized the protest in response to the city’s mask mandate instituted last week.

Phillips wore a face covering when he took the stage but following cries from the crowd to take the mask off and to “set a good example,” he did so after saying, “I can’t breathe.”

Gov. Doug Ducey denounced Phillips’ usage of the phrase, especially as protests against police brutality have become commonplace across the country.

“Just flat out wrong. Despicable doesn’t go far enough,” Ducey said in a tweet. “The final words of George Floyd should NEVER be invoked like this. Anyone who mocks the murder of a fellow human has no place in public office. Period.”

Mayor Jim Lane also objected to usage of the phrase.

Lane called on Phillips to apologize for his actions.

“I share the profound disappointment expressed by many residents at the words Mr. Phillips chose to use,” Lane said in a tweet. “The phrase “I can’t breathe” during this moment in time was callous and insensitive.”

Phillips said mask mandates hurt businesses and that people have to rely on themselves instead of the government.

Phillips called for more education over regulation from the government when it came to face coverings. He said he’ll be working with the city and businesses in Scottsdale to provide education about coronavirus prevention.

“I’d happily wear a mask out of respect for my fellow citizen, but when government threatens me with a fine or a possible arrest if I don’t conform, then I protest,” Phillips said.

Gov. Doug Ducey gave local leaders the power last week to decide whether they would institute mask mandates.

Lane issued an emergency proclamation last week to require face coverings in public places.

Even if Scottsdale hadn’t instituted a face mask policy, the city would still be subject to similar requirements adopted by the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors last week.

“I understand the resistance that many have to the loss of your personal freedom to choose how you respond and react during this health crisis,” Lane said in a press release Thursday. “In this emergency, however, like any other, we have a civic responsibility to act and sometimes accept actions that are important for recovery.”

The mandate went into effect Friday, which requires face covering for anyone age 6 or older.

On Wednesday, Arizona reported 1,795 new coronavirus cases, pushing the state’s total to 59,974.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Screenshot via Phoenix Police Facebook)...
Marcia Hammond

2 Phoenix officers, 2 bystanders pull injured driver from burning car

Two Phoenix police officers who pulled an unconscious man from a burning SUV this week shrugged off praise and said the rescue was all in a day's work.
12 hours ago
A woman wearing a face mask to curb the spread of coronavirus walks past a health campaign poster f...

Arizona’s COVID-19 death toll surpasses 26,000, 11th most in nation

Arizona’s COVID-19 death count surpassed 26,000 on Friday, 15 days after reaching the 25,000 mark.
12 hours ago
William Rice, left, and Christina Harnish (Pima County Sheriff's Department Photos)...
Associated Press

2 suspects in 2017 Maryland murder case arrested at Arizona homeless camp

A man and woman wanted in connection with a Maryland murder case in 2017 have been arrested at a homeless camp in southern Arizona, authorities said Thursday.
12 hours ago
(Screenshot/ADOT Webcam)...

2 die in wrong-way crash on southbound Loop 303 in West Valley early Friday

Two people died in a wrong-way crash that shut down part of Loop 303 in the West Valley early Friday.
12 hours ago
(ASU Screenshot)...
Taylor Tasler

ASU professor, students build air filters to help keep kids safe from COVID-19 while in class

Infectious Disease Epidemiologist Meghan Jehn and students from Arizona State University are building DIY Corsi-Rosenthal boxes, which can filter out air particles that can carry viruses like COVID-19.
12 hours ago
(File Photo by Mario Villafuerte/Getty Images)...
Griselda Zetino

Report points to why Arizona Latino students have been falling behind academically

A new report shines a light on factors that for decades have been causing Latino students in Arizona to lag behind many of their peers.
12 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

HVAC upkeep in Arizona saves money, keeps families prepared in the long run

Does your air conditioner make weird noises or a burning smell when it starts? If so, you may be due for an AC unit replacement.
Arizona State University

This is the best year to get your MBA

Getting a master’s degree is a major commitment of time, energy, and money, so returning to school — even if you’re thinking about a part-time program that allows you to keep working — is one of the biggest decisions of your career.

How your family can explore the Musical Instrument Museum

Whether you want to spend a day with family, do crafts with kids at home, or have an adult night out, the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix has options. As the world’s only global musical instrument museum, MIM offers interactive and immersive exhibits to foster an appreciation of different cultures and their instruments. “A visit […]
Protesters gather in Scottsdale to oppose city’s mask mandate