The stage is set for a legal battle between a Michigan barber who is defying the lockdown and state officials trying to protect public health. Karl Manke of Owosso opened his shop on Monday in violation of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s orders, declaring he would continue giving haircuts until “Jesus walked in.” Police gave him a citation on Wednesday, and the state police served him with orders on Friday—but Manke, 77, was open for business on Saturday.
The attorney general’s office said if he doesn’t close the barber shop, it will request a court order to do it for him. “Mr. Manke’s actions are not a display of harmless civil disobedience,” the AG’s office said. “His actions are counterproductive to the collective effort businesses and communities everywhere have made to slow the spread of COVID-19, and by opening the doors to his business, he’s putting the lives of many more Michiganders at risk.” Manke said he’s staying open: “I believe it's my right to work to make my living and that’s what I’m going to do.”