Fed-Up Pilot Sends Michigan Governor a Clear Message with Flight Path


Michigan Democrat Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has become the face of the meaningless lockdown requirement.

For instance, most of us might grumble at lockdowns but concede they’re rational if done appropriately. Few, however, would concede that an entire massive state needs the same lockdown requirements when only a cluster of urban counties constitute the majority of cases.

Also, when it comes to lockdown requirements, they should be as limited as necessary, obviously — and related to public health. Why, then, were gardening supplies part of her extended order?

Well, I hope you like it, Michiganders, because Whitmer plans to keep her order in place until at least May 28 — even as states with less-dense populations start opening up.

Ed Frederick, a 45-year-old licenses pilot and owner of a small business, is sick of it. So, on Friday, he took off and landed in Grand Rapids, Michigan, with his small plane, according to the New York Post. What he did in the hour he was up in the air made news.

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He didn’t have a banner or anything like that. Instead, he sent a message via his flight path — tracing the letters “F-U” with an arrow he said was pointed at the governor’s mansion:

I’m sure he meant “Fight Unhelpfulness,” since Whitmer’s lockdown requirements are profoundly unhelpful.

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“It’s a power trip,” Frederick, who lives outside of Grand Rapids, told the Post.

“The government, no matter Democrats or Republicans, always seem like they’re trying to do something just to prove they’re doing something, without weighing the ramifications.”

Frederick said the quiet part out loud for Gov. Whitmer: If she had just locked down the urban counties that were most affected by the novel coronavirus, her Democratic voter base would be decidedly unimpressed.

So instead, she just locked down the entire state. Hope you don’t own a business in one of those Michigan counties where the coronavirus hasn’t been a major presence, because, you know, your livelihood is less important than Whitmer’s poitical future. Sorry, yo!

“[Whitmer] says this is for the safety of Michigan, but I think it’s for the safety of her keeping her votes, because the southeast is highly Democratic,” Frederick said, according to the Post.

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“That’s been an issue for a lot of people in the rural counties,” he added.

Whitmer, for her part, says that the low number of cases in northern and western Michigan have doubled in the past fortnight.

“We must all continue to be diligent, observe social distancing and limit in-person interactions and services to slow the spread of COVID-19,” Whitmer said in a statement, according to the Post.

“Michigan now has more than 40,000 cases of COVID-19. The virus has killed more Michiganders than we lost during the Vietnam war. Extending this order is vital to the health and safety of every Michigander.”

And of course, the divisive Gov. Whitmer urged all Michigan residents to “work together.”

Frederick wasn’t so impressed with this logic.

“I don’t need the government to wipe my tushie every two minutes,” he said. “Let me know what the problems are going to be and let me know what the ramifications are. I’m responsible for myself.”

However, he’s not quite so impressed with the armed protesters who engaged in open carry during a demonstration Thursday at the Michigan statehouse.

While a gun owner himself, Frederick told the Post that the protest was “not painting them in a good light.”

As Business Insider noted, carrying weapons is legal in Michigan’s statehouse, but Frederick didn’t think it was necessary.

“We have an open carry, but just because it’s legal, doesn’t mean you should do it,” he told the Post.

I have to say that that Frederick’s flight path protest was head and shoulders above the statehouse demonstration. If you have pilot’s license, I highly recommend it.

I understand that legally owned weapons outnumber privately owned airplanes, but this took one person instead of many, and it didn’t help liberals prop up an unpopular governor by pointing to a small number of gun owners crowding into the statehouse and painting them as the radical alternative.

Plus, you have to give him credit for not only creativity but some good flight planning. Unfortunately, given a governor who banned the sale of gardening supplies — because well, why not? — you wonder if she’s going to ban small planes next.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture