With the number of corona cases increasing across Germany, criticism of mask-grumpy people is on the rise. “In a democratic constitutional state, it is essential that legally binding rules are also accepted and enforced,” Berlin constitutional lawyer Ulf Buermeyer said on Sunday in the Tagesspiegel. “Mask-grumpy people, for example, behave deeply undemocratically if they don’t recognize legal boundaries.” They also behaved in a lack of solidarity, “because crises like the corona pandemic can only be effectively dealt with if everyone participates”.
Buermeyer is one of the founders of the Society for Freedom Rights (GFF) and, together with journalist Philip Banse, is designing the weekly political podcast “State of the Nation” – the question is what restrictions are needed to contain the corona crisis. months.
Buermeyer says politics has a major impact on the acceptance of regulations. Two factors are decisive: “ On the one hand, anti-corona measures must be proportionate, ie based in particular on a scientific basis, and, on the other, they must be plausibly justified and communicated. This is the case with most of the measures taken in recent months. “Mistakes such as the total ban on demonstrations in the spring were quickly corrected.”
Police officers are bullied, spat and coughed
Nonetheless, disputes over corona compliance are increasingly escalating. At least that’s what the police union (GdP) explains. Her deputy boss Jörg Radek told the dpa news agency last weekend: “There is still a high degree of acceptance for the Corona rules, but we can also feel that the mood is starting to become more aggressive – for example when we as the police take the measures. want to enforce. ”
And: “Then there is resistance. It starts with insults, then there is bullying, spitting and coughing. Our colleagues experience all this in this pandemic. “
In particular, the mask requirement and the distance requirement repeatedly cause disputes. The mask requirement was introduced in April by the first countries in local public transport and retail, and some cities such as Jena in Thuringia made progress. Most recently, it was partially expanded to other crowded public areas.
On Tuesday, drastically stricter rules will be adopted in Berlin. The final draft of the new Infection Protection Regulation requires a mask requirement to apply in markets and other public places. In addition, a maximum of five people can stay together in the public space – or several members of two households.
As per state police reports, there have been disputes over corona rules on an almost daily basis lately. At a supermarket in Zwickau, Saxony, a man recently lashed out with an ax when reminded of the mask requirement. In Mülheim, North Rhine-Westphalia, a 66-year-old caught a 55-year-old with her car after shopping in the supermarket and slightly injured him. He had previously asked the woman to wear mouth and nose protection and to keep her distance. In Kaufbeuren, Bavaria, five police officers were slightly injured during a check in a bar. And controls also escalated in rail traffic, where mask requirements apply.
The operations don’t just come from so-called mask refusers. Citizens seeking protection have recently made more and in some cases more aggressive demands for their protection rights, for example pointing out their misconduct to those who refused to wear masks. “That’s why there are now more such operations,” said police unionist Radek – but this trend cannot be proven with numbers.
Police effort to enforce general corona guidelines is sometimes significant. In the Saxon Erzgebirgskreis, which was declared a Corona Risk Area last Monday, local police officers from the Saxon riot police and the main customs office in Erfurt came to the rescue last weekend. A total of 53 officers were employed there.
In the district town of Annaberg-Buchholz, offenses were punished in several restaurants. In one pub, employees could not demonstrate a hygiene concept or guarantee contact tracing – the pub was closed.
“Stay bans largely pointless”
According to constitutional lawyer Buermeyer, who was a judge in the state of Berlin for many years, the bans on accommodation in particular have lost a lot of confidence in recent days: ‘Such rules are largely meaningless from a medical point of view, but have a huge impact on the basic rights of travelers and people who operate hotels and guesthouses. From a fundamental rights perspective, this does not fit together – it is not for nothing that the housing ban does not stand up to scrutiny by the courts, ”he says.
Those making political decisions in the pandemic, they believe, should learn from the “housing ban fiasco” and infer measures from medical knowledge. “Restrictions must also be justified in such a way that citizens understand them.”