Some of the biggest masking advocates in California were busted maskless at large events on Sunday, despite a statewide mandate for universal indoor masking.
Former NBA superstar Magic Johnson posted to Instagram pictures of himself with various officials, VIPs and celebrities at Sunday’s Los Angeles Rams Vs. San Francisco 49ers Conference Championship game at SoFi stadium.
During the the Rams' victory over the 49ers, advancing them to the Superbowl, Johnson posed maskless with Democratic California officials including Governor Gavin Newsom, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, and San Francisco Mayor London Breed.
Johnson also posed with notables including billionaires Alec Gores, Mark Walter, Andy Rosenfield, former McDonalds CEO Don Thompson, Dodgers Executive Vice President Lon Rosen and actor Rob Lowe, many of whom donate to Democrat causes and campaigns.
Garcetti, Breed and Lowe are seen holding masks in their hands in the photographs.
According to Johnson, many of the pictures were taken in a stadium suite. Social media erupted with criticism following the hypocrisy.
Newsom instituted a universal indoor mask mandate in December and then extended that order until February 15. SoFi stadium also has a clear policy about masks posted on the venue's website stating "…masks are required for all attendees" and "masks can only be removed to actively eat or drink, after which they must be immediately put back on."
Just a few days ago, Los Angeles County officials repeated that it is too soon to consider relaxing mask restrictions.
SoFi Stadium will host Super Bowl LVI in two weeks and masks will be required of all attendees. Los Angeles County health officials have stated that all fans will be given KN95 masks and be reminded to wear masks throughout the game unless eating or drinking.
Newsom is a frequent violator of his own mandated COVID regulations. Newsom was famously busted at the height of the pandemic flaunting his own mandates by eating maskless indoors at the French Laundry restaurant with members of the California medical advisory board after having shuttered thousands of other restaurants across the state. The incident galvanized and ultimately unsuccessful recall effort against the Governor.
While Garcetti was posing with Johnson and Breed, Los Angeles, California has some of the most onerous masking restrictions in the US which includes as of last week, LA’s Unified School District's more than 600,000 students being required to begin wearing higher-grade, non-cloth masks. The district also extended weekly COVID-19 testing requirements through February in an effort to keep schools open through the Omicron surge.
Breed was busted in September violating her own mask mandate at the Black Cat nightclub dancing with Black Lives Matter co-founder Alicia Garza and singer Raphael Saadiq. The nightclub’s Instagram page posted, and then deleted, a photo showing Breed smiling and partying maskless.
Like Newsom, Breed was also previously spotted in the French Laundry restaurant in November dining with seven other people to celebrate the birthday of a friend.