Ever since the Governor declared a limit of 10 people for Thanksgiving gatherings this year, he and law enforcement have been at odds. The New York State Sheriff's Association is speaking out against comments recently made by Governor Cuomo and are addressing citizens' concerns.

The letter begins addressing the number of complaints Sheriff's Offices around the state have been receiving since the first COVID-19 orders were issued by the Governor's Office. There have been thousands. The Sheriff's Association letter says departments across the state have been doing what they can, "withing the law and the Constitution, to address those complaints." The main issue is enforcing some of the restrictions without going down a slippery slope.

The letter also specifically addresses Governor Cuomo's recently issued Executive Order which limits, "non-essential private residential gatherings" to no more than 10 individuals. This limitation put in place by the Governor has caused many communities to fear, as The Sheriff's Association says, armed deputies arriving to count the number of people at the dinner table. The Sheriff's Association has taken the stance that the enforcement of such regulation is "neither practical nor Constitutional."

The letter also takes specific aim at Governor Cuomo and his recent comment in particular. At a recent press briefing Governor Cuomo said, "Law enforcement officers don’t get to pick and choose which laws they will enforce." To that the association calls foul. The letter states,

We find that comment ironic, and disingenuous, since the Governor has directed that his own State Police do not have to enforce the order.  Apparently, it is another case of 'do as I say, not as I do,' such as we have seen with many other political leaders.

Sheriff's across the state also find Cuomo's comment calling Sheriffs "dictators" for following the Constitution rather than his orders.

The letter goes on to talk about the number of people specifically, 10. They beg the question, what if a household has 12 people in it? A question many people have asked since the decree came down. Instead of demanding and prohibiting, The Sheriff's Association wishes the Governor would have used his position to encourage citizens to use common sense and "voluntarily" adhere to guidance of state and federal health officials.

The letter ends with that exact suggestions. It reads, "We in law enforcement do not have the resources nor the legal authority to force you to do those things.  It is a matter of individual responsibility and we are confident that you will all voluntarily rise to the occasion." The suggested safety measures of hand washing, mask wearing and social distancing have been driven into our heads for months now and it's time we all take those responsibilities a lot more serious as we get into the holiday season.

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