A Michigan business owner who interrupted a news reporter on live television and delivered a rant that later went viral, explained the struggle that people like him have faced due to pandemic lockdowns and other restrictions.
Morris approached the reporter and said, "$4 trillion dollars of stimulus money and they gave it to who? Special interests and campaign donors," before explaining that he owns the nearby cafe near which Haywood was standing for his broadcast.
Haywood invited Morris to explain his position further, prompting the business owner to say, "we've got a government that has taken the stimulus money, they gave it to special campaign donors that ... they gave it to special interests, they abandoned me, and they put me in a position where I have to fight back."
"I feel everybody needs to stand up," Morris continued. "There was enough money to give every family, every family in this country $20,000 to go home for two months. They chose to give it to special interests and campaign donors, the Kennedy Space Center, and they abandoned us."
"You could have given me money ... I'd gladly walk away for 60 days and let this virus settle down," Morris said.
Asked if he plans to violate the state order and remain open, the cafe owner replied, "this isn't an order, this is a conspiracy, this is tyranny."
He said his message for other business owners was to "wake up, stand up, this is America, be free!"
Haywood posted the video of their interaction on Twitter, where it went viral.
He told the outlet that, since March, he has received $2,400 in PPP funds. The popular program, which offered businesses forgivable loans if they kept people on the payroll, ran out of funds quickly, though they were replenished in an emergency relief bill. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have been calling for another top-up as part of the next relief package, although talks have remained stalled for months.
U.S. District Judge Paul Maloney on Wednesday ruled against a lawsuit brought by the Michigan Restaurant and Lodging Association, which sought a temporary restraining order against the ban on indoor dining, Fox News reported.