Defying COVID-19 Thanksgiving Guidelines Could Have Disastrous Consequences, Doctor Warns

Among those defying orders are four New York county sheriffs who say they refuse to enforce Governor Andrew Cuomo’s order limiting Thanksgiving get-togethers to 10 people.

Despite stricter Thanksgiving guidelines and warnings from health officials, many Americans remain defiant about the holiday. In Oregon, County Commissioner Tootie Smith says she will defy the state's limit of six people at her Thanksgiving table.

"How dare the governor keep families apart, when we need to be together,” Smith told Inside Edition.

When asked if it was cavalier to have large Thanksgiving gatherings, Smith said, "We have been told what to do for eight months now. Let the people decide for themselves." 

In New York State, at least four county sheriffs say they will refuse to enforce Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s order limiting Thanksgiving get-togethers to 10 people. They say who you allow into your home is your business. 

“Obtaining a search warrant to see how many turkey or tofu eaters are present is not a priority,” Sheriff Richard Giardino posted online.

"I believe that [Cuomo] does not have the authority to mandate how many people you can have in your own residence," Giardino said. 

But a Nebraska doctor is warning that such defiance could have disastrous consequences. 

“If we don't change the way that we are behaving. If we don't stop gathering, we are going to be in an utter catastrophe," Dr. Daniel Johnson.

In Chicago, Mayor Lori Lightfoot is facing intense backlash for her recent lockdown advisory that called on people to "cancel traditional Thanksgiving plans."

It came days after she joined large crowds celebrating Joe Biden’s election victory.

"That crowd was gathered whether I was there or not," Lightfoot said in a later interview. "But this has been a super hard year on everyone."

In California, Gov. Gavin Newsom is also being accused of "hypocrisy" for attending a friend's lavish birthday party at a five-star restaurant despite state social gathering restrictions.

“I want to apologize to you, because I need to preach and practice, not just preach," Newsom said.