The city of El Cajon and Reopen San Diego joined forces Monday afternoon at El Cajon Centennial Plaza to present the All I Want for Christmas is Freedom Rally.
An estimated 200 people gathered in the plaza with vendors, American flags, cheering the Open Cali event. The rally included local leaders who spoke about citizens’ rights to make their own decisions for their health and wellbeing, advocating for reopening businesses, schools and organizations during the state’s current stay-at-home order.
This follows on the heels of a San Diego judge issuing an injunction that stopped state and local officials from enforcing COVID-19 shutdowns for restaurants and live entertainment venues on Dec. 17. The following day, a Californian appeals court blocked the judge’s order, keeping the governors stay-at-home order in effect.
Congressman-elect Daryll Issa (R-50) welcomed the crowd to a “wide open El Cajon” saying four years ago America changed.
“America started putting America first. America started caring in every way by making sure that we save the world by first saving an economy that has in fact powered the rest of the world for more than half a century,” he said.
Issa said he celebrated the reopening of the state and “the great city” of El Cajon.
“This is the man that I am most proud of [El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells], and he just happens to run this city,” said Issa. “He stood up and said, ‘My city is not closing.’ This is my hero, and this is our city’s hero and as long as I can breathe, this man is going to have a special place in my heart, but also in this community.”
Wells said there are more important things in life than being afraid and now, some people are focused on making the public afraid.
“We should not be spending Christmas time in fear right now,” said Wells. “I actually believe that we are turning the corner with sunny days coming and this darkness will soon recede. It is important in the meantime that all of you step up for your rights. Stand up for your individual rights to raise a family, to make a living, to send your kids to school, to protect your loved ones.”
Wells said some people say that he does not care about people’s deaths, however, he contends he spent his life trying to keep people alive through the healthcare system, and that the current state does not count lives lost to suicide, overdose, and families “ruined” by divorce.
“All of these things count, and we are going to have to live with in the aftermath for years and years to come,” said Wells. “We need to stand up and keep life as normal in America as we possibly can, while we can because you are the last line of defense…You are the ones that are important. You are standing up every day and fighting for freedom and refusing to accept tyranny. That is what is going to keep America great and that is what is going to keep America alive.”
Wells said that he believes God has a plan.
“I think that at Christmas time it is important to remember that,” he said. “He is going to take this evil that has been perpetrated on us and I believe that he is going to make it good. I do not think that he is done with America. I do not believe that he is done with us. Thanks for being here and thanks for taking a stand.”
State Sen. Brian Jones, 38th District said he is committed to seeing Gov. Gavin Newsom’s “power is cut off as much as possible.” He added that he coauthored a resolution to end Newsom’s executive orders this year, but that Democrat colleagues would not allow it to be heard on the Senate floor.
“They were so in lockstep to what Governor Newsom’s doing, they can not see beyond their own front door. Because most of them are locked inside their house,” said Jones. “I am glad to see patriots here this afternoon fighting for our rights to make a living, our rights to move around as we choose. We just need to reopen San Diego.”
Jones said the campaign to recall the governor is going well and believes that Newsom will be on the ballot before 2022.
“We as free Americans and Californians are going to have the opportunity to fire Newsom and send him back to the French Laundry for dinner,” he said.
Jones said it was promising when restaurants could open, and he went out to eat with his family. He said he was disappointed with the appeals court’s decision and that people on both sides of the California Senate are realizing that Newsom has gone too far.
“But you know what? We have a lot of patriot restaurant owners that told the government to ‘suck it.’ They opened their doors,” said Jones. “They allowed indoor seating. They were safe. They were careful. A lot of us went out to patronize and willingly hand over our dollars for the services and products that they are offering. That is what America is about. The free market. If they are offering a service or a product you want and you have the money to give them, then let’s do it.”
As of Dec. 20 there were 6,189 cases of coronavirus in El Cajon. The city is among the top five in infection rates countywide.