passenger bites two TSA agents

Two Floridians Join 11 Other Flyers Asking Court of Appeals To Strike Down TSA’s Mask Rule

A group of 13 flyers from nine states and the District of Columbia who brought six lawsuits challenging the Transportation Security Administration’s legal authority to continue extending a requirement that all public-transportation passengers don face masks filed a 94-page brief Monday night urging the Court of Appeals to terminate the Federal Transportation Mask Mandate.

The Court filing comes as the Biden Administration weights whether to extend the FTMM for a fifth time. It is currently scheduled to expire April 18 after being continued four times since first issued Feb. 1, 2021, by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention and TSA at the order of President Biden.

Petitioners in the six cases, which were filed around the country but then consolidated at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, ask the court to declare the TSA orders illegal and unconstitutional, vacate them immediately, and permanently enjoin TSA from ever requiring masks in the future. They argue the FTMM must be struck down because it violates the Air Carrier Access Act; the Fifth Amendment right to due process; the constitutional guarantee of freedom to travel; the 10th Amendment; TSA and CDC’s statutory and regulatory authority; the Administrative Procedure Act; the Food, Drug, & Cosmetic Act; and two international treaties.

“The FTMM remains in effect today despite the fact that all 50 states have eliminated their mask requirements; CDC currently recommends that Americans in 99.53% of counties do not don face coverings; and 228 studies, articles, and videos compiled by petitioners demonstrate that masks do not reduce COVID-19 spread but harm human health in dozens of ways,” according to the brief. “TSA’s mask orders exclude millions of Americans (including 11 petitioners) with medical conditions who can’t safely wear face coverings from using any mode of the nation’s public transportation system.”

TSA refused to let Lead Petitioner Lucas Wall of Washington, D.C., through its checkpoint June 2, 2021, at Orlando International Airport because his medical disability precludes him from wearing a mask. He’s been stranded in Florida for more than 10 months as airlines continue to deny his requests for medical exemptions.

“TSA has no legal authority to keep extending its mandates forcing all transportation passengers nationwide to cover their faces,” Wall said. “We urge President Biden to allow the mandate to expire April 18. If not, it’s time for the courts to put a stop to this nonsense since masks are nothing but a charade that don’t reduce transmission of COVID-19.”

Wall is also suing CDC in a separate case in Orlando to block its part of the mask mandate. The federal government filed its final brief in that lawsuit today, putting the case in the judge’s hands for a ruling. Wall founded Americans Against Mask Mandates last August to fight the FTMM. The coalition has more than 600 members and 14 active lawsuit attacking the mandate’s legality, including those filed last month by 10 pilots and nine flight attendants. There are also 22 states suing to end the mask mandate.

Michael Faris of Elizabethtown, Kentucky, has to fly every 12 days for work as a helicopter maintenance supervisor. He is medically exempt by his doctor from wearing a mask, but airlines refuse to grant him an exception because of the FTMM. Faris has been injured twice after fainting while masked on planes.

“I never wanted to be in a position to file lawsuits against my government,” he said. “However, as the Declaration of Independence reads, ‘when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and provide new guards for their future security.’ This extremely important text rings true today, more than ever.”

Yvonne Marcus, an American citizen who lives most of the year in Israel, developed skin cancer around her nose after forced masking on numerous flights in 2020 and 2021.

“TSA’s mask requirement truly has been a brilliant way of stripping us of our human rights and it’s all based on lies,” she said. “People are suffering horrible side effects from forced muzzling. The list is long.

We have all the proof we need to show that masks do nothing to stop the spread of COVID-19 but harm our health, as the airline industry now admits in demanding abolition.”

The group of petitioners also includes a Florida man and his 5-year-old autistic son who need to fly often to Massachusetts for specialized medical care; a Missouri veteran who was removed from a Southwest Airlines flight for removing his mask to breathe and then had his TSA Pre-Check status revoked; an Ohio couple who has been unable to use public transportation because of their health problems; an Allegiant Air flight attendant from North Carolina who quit over moral objections to forcing passengers to obstruct their breathing; and a Virginia man who wasn’t allowed to fly to Massachusetts to help his son move despite having a doctor’s note that he shouldn’t wear a mask.

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