Health Freedom Defense Fund’s founder Leslie Manookian and Attorney George Wentz Challenge Biden’s Mask Mandate to Fly.
“We were inspired by our fundamental belief that people have a right to be sovereign over their bodies.”
Attorney George Wentz has joined Health Freedom Defense Fund to create a strategy to remove mandates for masks, covid testing and vaccines. Together with founder Leslie Manookian, the two are filing lawsuits on behalf of Americans across the country, fighting for you to decide how you care for your own body.
In this timely interview with Leah Wilson, Executive Director and co-Founder of Stand for Health Freedom, the two discuss a recent case asking the court to strike down the CDC-implemented mask mandate for air travel. Advocates will hear about the untenable foundation mask mandates rest on.
One thing is crystal clear– “This power that the federal government is attempting to wield simply does not exist.” The federal government is overstepping its enumerated powers into the police powers reserved by states.
The orders and opinions coming from federal agencies on mandates do not have the force of law, but they are being treated as such. When you are told it is federal law to wear a mask, that is not true. This is the essence of HFDF v. Biden. Can we really have something that transforms our lives daily, with unknown lasting effects, ordered by an unelected official, in complete disregard to legal process and the voice of the people? With this lawsuit, Ms. Manookian demands to know, ”Why does an unelected bureaucrat… have the power to tell me what to do with my life or my body or my health?”
Masks have not been proven safe nor effective. The products are investigational. We don’t know what the masks will do to kids or adults after prolonged uses.
“Under a broad long history, following World War II, we have all agreed, everyone agrees: Forced human experimentation is fundamentally incorrect.”
Informed consent and the option to refuse is fundamental.
Watch the interview to learn more about HFDF v. Biden, rights under Emergency Use Authorizations for investigational products, secondary consequences, and health rights in court.
Steps You Can Take
Step One: Add your voice to the thousands who are standing for our right to travel free from forced medical mandates.
Step Three: Please consider making a one-time or monthly monetary contribution to support the efforts of Stand for Health Freedom, a nonprofit organization dedicated to protecting basic human rights, constitutional rights and parental rights. Together, we’re committed to reaching the people and making it undeniable to citizens and lawmakers across the nation and in your home state that America still stands for health freedom. Your donation, no matter the size, truly makes a difference!
The entire interview between Leah Wilson, Attorney George Wentz and Leslie Manookian has been transcribed and is available below, with permission to quote and source material from, so long as an original attribution link to this article is used as a citation for the original interview.
Full Interview Transcript
Leah Wilson: Hello, Leah Wilson with Stand for Health Freedom—a national growing voting bloc of health freedom advocates here in the U.S. and in Canada.
One of the most common questions that we are getting today is, “Are the executive orders really law? And what if I can’t fly soon because of all these travel restrictions?”
I have a guest here with me today that is taking action to answer those burning questions for you and for me, and he is filing lawsuits on your behalf, for you to decide how you care for your own body.
Thank you so much, Mr. George Wentz for joining me today.
George Wentz: It’s a pleasure, Leah. Nice to meet you.
Leah Wilson: Thank you. Thank you. And a little bit about George before we jump in, he has been practicing law for over 38 years. He has his law degree from Georgetown University and has vast experience in complex litigation, constitutional law, and corporate law. He has went up against companies like GE and BP and [unintelligible 00:01:08], and has worked on these high stakes litigation cases successfully at every level from local to federal.
Mr. Wentz is passionate about bringing justice for human rights, for us to be able to decide how we care for our bodies, and fun fact is, he is one of the last living acting attorneys that practiced under the Reagan Administration.
It’s a pleasure to be able to learn from you today and hear about the good work that you’re doing.
George Wentz: Thank you. It’s a pleasure to meet you.
Leah Wilson: You are working with the Health Freedom Defense Fund, and we have Leslie Manookian here with us, who is president and co-founder of the Health Freedom Defense Fund. And this team is doing fabulous work around the clock to implement a strategy that removes the unethical and unlawful mask mandates, testing mandates, and vaccine mandates.
We are seeing these types of mandates roll out in the private sphere, the public sphere, in educational institutions, all around the country, and all around the world, and people want to know what is being done about it.
So, thank you both for the good work that you’re doing, and I want to just start out by diving right in with George in talking about the lawsuit that the Health Freedom Defense Fund recently filed against the Biden Administration, asking the court to strike down Biden’s federal mask mandate that was implemented through the CDC.
What inspired you to file this specific case, and why do you think the court should make the decision to legally strike down the mandate?
George Wentz: Well, we were inspired by our fundamental belief that people have a right to be sovereign over their bodies. I should be able to control what goes into my body as a drug. I should be able to control what I eat. And I should be able to have a fundamental human right to breathe unobstructedly.
I cannot be forced to recycle my exhaust for ten hours in an airport or an airplane.
A fundamental human right is the right to breathe fresh air. And this is denying us that right.
So, we looked into how it was done, and what we found was that there was a January 21 executive order by President Biden pushing all of the administrative agencies to implement mask mandates. And that was answered by the CDC. The person who wrote this order from the CDC is a medical doctor who is in charge of quarantining sick animals if they entered the United States.
And this is the law that was relied upon in order to issue a nationwide mask order that impacts every single individual in the United States who wants to transport themselves anywhere on a bus, any transportation hub—that can be a bus station, that can be a train station, that can be plane, it could be a ferry. Any transportation, mode of transportation. Period. You have to wear a mask.
We are now ordered by an unelected, unaccountable technocrat at the CDC who made up this order on his own and issued it on his own, and it was implemented nationwide.
Now, the last time I looked, we were supposed to be a republic, and we were supposed to be a representative democracy. There was not one elected person involved in issuing the CDC order. The people had no voice.
So, the question that I have and the question that is presented to the court is, “Can we really have something that impacts us so heavily in every single aspect of our daily lives ordered by an unelected bureaucrat in Washington D.C. who is totally 100% unaccountable to the people?”
This was not issued in accordance with the Administrative Procedure Act, so there was no comment period, there was no rule-making followed. They claimed that it was an emergency.
But if it was an emergency, the emergency is clearly over a year old because emergencies were declared in the Trump Administration, back when by [Acer], right?
And so now, we have this order coming out in January 2021. Eight days later, we have the CDC rushing into order a thing that’s saying nothing had changed in the interim. No emergency had changed. So [unintelligible 00:05:56] they’re relying to do this massive change that impacts every single person.
We have no voice. We should have a voice, and we should have dominion over our bodies, and we should have a fundamental right to breathe, without which, we die.
Leslie Manookian: Leah, can I just jump in on that? Because there’s something else that’s important.
Well, first of all, just so you know, I’m the founder. I didn’t have any co-founders at Health Freedom Defense Fund. And I feel that it’s a gift from God that George is my general counsel. He was brought into my life a little less than two years ago, and he’s seriously been a godsend on so many levels. So I’m just so grateful for that.
What I wanted to say is–
George Wentz: She makes me blush.
Leslie Manookian: It’s true. What I wanted to say is it’s truly important that people understand. When you go into the airport, and they say, “It’s federal law that are required to put a mask on when you are traveling,” that is not true. That is a lie. There is no federal law anywhere.
The legislative branch, Congress passes laws. And there’s no law. This was something done by the executive branch. And we’re seeing more and more of this, unfortunately, in recent years—executives acting more like kings than someone who is overseeing the country.
So what happened is Biden issues this order, and the legislative branch didn’t act. So it’s not law, and they’re not telling you the truth when you go into the airport.
George Wentz: It wasn’t even an executive order. The mask mandate wasn’t even an executive order of the President. It was an emergency order issued by somebody that if you go onto the CDC website, you have to really search to find this person. This is a very low-level—honestly, the law that they relied on is all about quarantining sick animals here in the United States. I don’t know how they used that to create a mask mandate that impacts every single healthy human.
Leah Wilson: And Leslie, you raised a really good question because people do want to know, does this have the enforcement of law? Do these executive orders have this enforcement?
I, myself, have seen people be removed from airplanes for not keeping their mask above their nose. And then lately, when I’ve been flying, I hear over and over again, that if you fail to keep your mask above your nose for the whole flight, then we will be obligated to turn you in and to issue fines—these federal fines. Are those fines enforceable, George? What are you seeing with these threats, for these secondary consequences of not complying?
George Wentz: Well, if I were to be presented with that case, I would certainly argue that the fines that they’re attempting to enforce are not enforceable, and we have not addressed that issue in this lawsuit. With this lawsuit, it’s all about whether or not the order forcing us to wear the masks is actually valid and a true power that can be exercised by the CDC.
We say it’s not. But if that came up, I’d think that probably, the arguments that we’re making in this case would be used by a criminal defense attorney who would be saying that these fines cannot be issued. So I question the validity of the whole thing.
Historically, the other issue is, does the Federal Government even have the power to force us to put a mask on our face? We would say, no, of course not. Health, safety and welfare have always been encompassed what we call the police power, and the police power has always resided with local government—state and local government.
Now, we have something in our federal system called dual sovereignty where certain limited, enumerated powers reside with the Federal Government. It was created by the States. But all of the police powers reside in the state. Health, safety and welfare are the very core of the police power, and therefore, were never granted to the Federal Government; therefore, this power that the Federal Government is attempting to wield simply does not exist.
Leslie Manookian: And this is why vaccine laws are state laws because health laws are state laws. They do not reside with the Federal Government, and in particular, not with the federal agency. They are not empowered to do this kind of thing.
And there have already been several good cases, several good decisions in our favor, which very much reinforce our belief that we will prevail.
George Wentz: There is the moratorium that you might have heard about with the CDC. The Supreme Court indicated that the rent moratorium issued by the CDC was an exercise of a general police power, which they did not have.
We had a very nice ruling out of Florida from a federal court saying that the CDC’s attempt to tell the entire cruise industry how they could act, was the exercise of a general police power which, once again, did not exist.
So, we’ve had some indications that the courts will be willing to reign in this overreach by the CDC. The main thing that bothers me is that the entire system of government is supposed to be—we are supposed to be a republic. Republic comes from Res Publica, res being thing, publica being the people. The government is the thing of the people.
In this instance, the people are being excluded from having any voice in the government at all, and that has to fall.
Leah Wilson: It’s so good. And that’s what makes this lawsuit so crucial because the [unintelligible 00:11:36] would benefit all of us in getting centralized government decision-making out of our health decisions. And that’s what I know Leslie has been working on this issue for decades too. The matter is how local will health decision-making be? It should say with us as an individual and as a parent. But when it starts to become a matter of state, and then even federal, that’s extremely scary.
So, I’m so thankful that you are fighting this fight in court to set the record straight.
Now, I also want to point out that paragraphs 39 and 40 of your lawsuit referenced the EUA for face masks. I bet many people have no clue that the use of face masks was authorized under an EUA. So how does this affect the case, and how does this affect people’s rights as it relates to these mandates?
George Wentz: Well, the law upon which the EUA process is based requires certain things. One of those things is that the recipient of any device or any product that is authorized in an emergency—Emergency Use Authorization, is referred to as investigational products. They are not approved by the FDA because the FDA has not done the proper studies to determine whether they are safe.
So, the fact is that when they came out with the masking recommendations in the beginning, and now, we’re seeing mandates. They issued the Emergency Use Authorizations to allow these to be used by people because they didn’t know what they would do.
There is a reason that we have a nose and a mouth, and that is to breathe out the stuff that needs to go out, and then we get fresh air and we inhale it. When we put a mask over our face, what we do is we trap the CO2, we trap all bacteria. Whatever you have coming out of your nasal passages and your mouth is in your lungs, and everything that is being exhaled, a large percentage of that is then recycled. So we get hypoxia. We get a build-up of CO2.
Children are reporting in schools where they’re being forced to mask for eight to ten hours a day that they can’t think. They get headaches. They can’t function properly.
We don’t know what this is doing to the brain cells. We don’t know if it’s killing off brain cells. We do know that hypoxia kills brain cells. We haven’t done studies to determine whether in youth, where they are developing their brains. We all know that all during youth—there’s a reason we don’t let kids drink alcohol because their small, developing, little brains will react very differently to it, and it could do a tremendously more damage than it does to adults.
And yet we’re forcing these children to wear masks without knowing what it does to them.
This is why it’s an Emergency Use Authorization, and therefore, under a broad, long history following the World War II, we have all agreed, everyone agrees, human experimentation, forced human experimentation, is fundamentally incorrect.
We have adopted this in our laws in the United States. There is Code of Federal Regulations. It speaks to it significantly. Sorry about that. And we have the ability to consent, we must consent, to be part of a human experiment.
This whole doctrine was built into the EUA regulations saying that you have to be informed that it’s investigational, you have to be informed that the FDA has not approved it. You have to be informed that all these tests and studies have not been completed, and that if you don’t want to take it, you don’t need to take it.
Fundamentally, that’s a fundamental human right enshrined in treaties, enshrined in law. It is so well-recognized in international law as to be something that we call jus cogen, which means it is a fundamental law that you just can’t go against.
So, we believe that when we’re forcing people against their will to wear these masks, which have not been studied, the long-term and short-term implications which we simply don’t know, that we are enforcing people to engage in a human experimentation, and that is fundamentally incorrect and cannot go on. And it is against a very clear statute.
Leslie Manookian: Can I say too—George, you talked that they haven’t been proven safe, but they also haven’t been proven effective. In fact, if anything, they’ve proven to not work. That’s what they have proven. There was a randomized, controlled trial—a review of randomized, controlled trials, CDC published last May, so May of 2020. And it reviewed all of the best randomized, controlled trials, evaluating transmission of flu virus when people wear masks, and they found that there was no impact.
And there have been several other studies done since then that showed the same thing basically. There was one in the U.S. Marines, and one done in Denmark.
Basically, the idea that they stop transmission is not accurate. And yet, the Federal Health Authorities are continuing to do this. So I think it really [unintelligible 00:17:00], to me, it brings up the most fundamental question, which is, why should someone, an unelected bureaucrat, as George mentioned, have the power to tell me what to do with my life, or my body, or my health? And I can go and read the research for myself and see that the research doesn’t support this, and yet, they’re still saying that it does.
They’re not being honest with the American public, and that’s not okay. What it does is it highlights the fact that these people are not positioned to make decisions for us, that no one should have that power over us because they can then abuse it. And that’s what’s happening.
George Wentz: Exactly, because they are speaking out of both sides of their mouth. On the one hand, they’re saying, “For the safety of others and the prevention of the transmission of the COVID virus, you must wear a mask.” If you look at the text of the EUA, they say it is misleading, and you cannot state that the use of the mask prevents or reduces transmission of a virus.
That’s right there, word for word. That’s almost the direct quote that I said there from the EUA. You can look it up.
So, they’re saying it doesn’t do, in the issuance of the EUA, precisely the policy that they are relying upon for it to do when they put this order forth.
So, they are speaking with forked tongue. This is absolutely deceptive.
Leslie Manookian: And the media, of course, doesn’t report it. The media is their megaphone for these people. So the American people aren’t getting the truth, and they’re not being able to evaluate for themselves what the science is and what the truth is.
Leah, I don’t have to tell you, we are at a very interesting time in our country, and what is going on is really wrong. And that’s why I founded Health Freedom Defense Fund, specifically, because I saw what was unfolding, given my background of now, almost 20 years in this stuff.
When the reports emerged of this new disease in China, I knew where it was going. And people may think that that sounds crazy, but I knew it because I’ve studied all the different pieces of legislation that they put in place over decades in order to facilitate this takeover of our health. And it’s not just happened overnight. It’s been going on for a long time.
And this is why I started Health Freedom Defense Fund because I could see where it was going, and I just had to do something to stop it. And like I said, it was a godsend that George came into my life because he’s now my partner in this whole program, and his law firm, Davillier Law Group, they’ve been such unbelievable supporters. They are just fantastic professionals, experienced, and are really helping us to win these cases. And we’ve already had some wins.
It’s sad that we are where we are, but I’m thrilled that I have Health Freedom Defense Fund, and this unbelievable legal team behind us, helping us try and right these wrongs.
Leah Wilson: Yes, and I think that is the key—there are people, like you and George, at the Health Freedom Defense Fund standing up to say, “We’ve had enough.” And one of the ways you’re doing that is by filing this lawsuit to strike down the federal mask mandates.
I have to ask, George. Could this lawsuit, in any way, benefit the federal employees that are fearing the executive order that says that they have to get the vaccination to keep their job, or could it set any positive precedent for those employees that are having that anxiety today about that requirement?
George Wentz: Well, the aspect that I mentioned about the Emergency Use Authorization of the mask applies equally to the vaccines, none of which, are approved for use. We hear that they have been proven safe and effective. Well, if they were proven safe and effective, they would be approved by the FDA, which they specifically are not.
So what the EUA for the vaccine requires is that you inform the recipient that the vaccine is an investigational product that is unapproved. So essentially, you’re being told, “Look, we don’t know what this really does. We don’t know all the ups and downs yet. It hasn’t been approved by the FDA. Therefore, you have the right to refuse it.”
That is a fundamental aspect of the law that authorizes the EUAs, and there is not one vaccine that is FDA-approved. They’re all EUA-authorized.
So, they have not been proven safe and effective yet. There are many, many, many unanswered questions.
So, it’s interesting the DOJ and the Office of the DOJ that I’ve admired my entire life called the Office of Legal Counsel, issued an opinion the other day saying that that law that I just described really only required you to be informed that you have the right to refuse, the option to refuse or accept administration of the product. Once you’re informed, then you can put under threat of losing your job if you don’t take it.
Now, imagine that legal analysis being applied to various sovereign rights, and how absurd that legal analysis would be.
“Okay, I have the right to vote.”
“Yes, Mr. Wentz, you work for our company and we understand that we might vote Republican. Therefore, we would like to inform you that if you exercise your right to vote in a way that we disagree with, then we’re going to terminate your job.”
How do you think that would stand up?
Or how about this one—have you heard of the Miranda Rights, right?
“You have the right to a lawyer. If you can’t afford one, one will be provided to you. You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you.”
“Now that we have informed you of those rights, please step into the cell without an attorney and we’re going to whip you until you confess.”
So, this is the most ridiculous legal analysis I have ever heard of in my life, that a law that says we must be informed of the options to accept or refuse, and you must be informed of that. That doesn’t mean that you have the right, that you are required to be informed of. It’s simply being informed.
I have never seen anything like this in my life. I don’t know who had actually authored that opinion, but I just cannot imagine that they did that really in good faith. It’s extraordinarily stretched.
This could give some hope to the Federal Government employees you mentioned. It could give hope to people who are being told that they have to take a vaccine by United Airlines, by anybody. And I don’t know that United Airlines has issued a mandatory. What I know they’re thinking of it, but I don’t know that they have yet.
But any of those mandatory vaccines, at this point, I think they’re highly questionable [unintelligible 00:24:28].
Leslie Manookian: So we had a case that was dismissed last week, right before this came out from DOJ, or the same day. The reason it was dismissed was because it was no longer considered right, which was because we’d actually filed the lawsuit, and Los Angeles Unified School District. We essentially won.
Los Angeles Unified School District’s superintendent had been out in the media for months and months, January, February, March, talking about how he was mandating the vaccine for all of his employees. And we helped employees of LAUSD to file suit.
The day after we filed, they issued a statement saying that they weren’t mandating the shots.
So, we had already won at that point. And then we went through a couple of months of back and forth, and we were supposed to have a hearing on August 2nd, so just a couple of days ago. What was interesting is that this DOJ opinion sided that lawsuit. It sided another lawsuit that we had filed against the mask mandate as well.
So, we think that they were doing two things. One is they were trying to telegraph to judges that it’s okay to not pay attention to the EUA. It’s okay to completely misinterpret it and twist the language in the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act and the Emergency Use Authorizations issued to Pfizer, Moderna and J&J. It’s okay to just pretend that what it says doesn’t exist.
But there was another thing, another piece of it that we believe was happening, and that is to telegraph to the judges, but also to the public, that you can be forced, and to all of the corporations, that you can force people. Because then a day or two later, Walmart, Disney, Netflix, Facebook, Google—I don’t know. I can’t think of the list, but dozens of companies then mandated.
And so it’s a very, very interesting thing, this opinion that DOJ put out. And I want to reiterate that DOJ does not make law. They don’t make law. This was a political move. DOJ is an agency, a federal agency, underneath the executive branch. They are not empowered to make law. This was an opinion, but they were trying to fire, to telegraph an opinion that they thought might influence the people and get people to stop rising up, and also to empower the corporations to do it.
So, we think it was a very strategic, at least that’s my opinion, it was a very strategic and political issuance of this opinion at the time they did it, right before our hearing that was due on August 2nd.
Leah Wilson: So it is important for people to understand that there’s some bullying tactics being used, and a lot of that comes into play when someone receives a mandate from private or public institution. It could be your employer, your school, and we have to first look at what is the policy.
And so, instead of just accepting bullying, whether it be from the DOJ or from your own employer, you need to look deeper and see what is actually going on.
Let’s hear about where is this case against the Federal Government regarding mask mandates. Where does it currently stand, and how do we follow along to see how it unfolds?
George Wentz: Well, at this point in time, it’s been filed and the defendants have all been served. The Federal Government, unlike every other defendant, has 60 days to answer whereas most people have 21 days to answer. So the Federal Government gets extra time. Being the king is good. It’s always good to be the king.
They have not appeared yet. We are anticipating that they will appear and answer, and that they will file a motion saying that the case should be dismissed. That’s normally [unintelligible 00:28:30] in this type of litigation. We will litigate that aspect [unintelligible 00:28:34]. We’ll see what the judge does. And we think we have every argument in support of our case well thought out, and certainly, we should survive any of this type of motion practice.
We’re anxious to get the case set before the judge, and to advance it as quickly as we can. But we’re quite certain that the normal—you’re a lawyer, Leah. You’re taught when you’re on the defense side, you deny, you delay, and you [unintelligible 00:29:11]. That’s what every defense lawyer does.
And so we anticipate that that is exactly what will happen here. But we are going to aggressively pursue it and try to have the rights of our clients vindicated and the principle established that the American people are not cattle, they are not livestock, and a quarantine law that pertains to such livestock would certainly not give the power to a bureaucrat to issue a nationwide mandate that covers every single human being who desires to travel, travel being a fundamental right in and of itself.
Leah Wilson: Yes, and I know that we are running out of time here, and I thank you so much for sharing with us about this key case, but please let us know how we can support Health Freedom Defense Fund, and how we can follow Health Freedom Defense Fund.
George Wentz: What’s the website?
Leslie Manookian: You can go to HealthFreedomDefense.org. That’s our website. And you can become a member. It costs $10.00 to become a member, but it’s incredibly helpful to us because it allows us to represent you in lawsuits across the country, wherever you may be. It gives Health Freedom Defense Fund standing to pursue suits, so please become a member. It’s a one-time $10.00 fee.
You can subscribe to our mailing list, and you can donate at the website, HealthFreedomDefense.org.
We are so grateful for everybody’s support. We’re doing all we can to fight these lawsuits, to pursue litigation that defends our health freedoms at the highest level. We’re not doing things on an individual basis for the most part because literally, we’re being contacted by thousands and thousands of people, and we don’t have the human resources or the financial resources to represent every single person who reaches out to us. But we have these very high target lawsuits which we hope we’ll move the ball down the field for all Americans.
And so we are so grateful for your support because these things cost a lot of money. And I’m doing everything I can to defend health freedoms, and I hope the people will support us, join, become members and all that. So thank you so much, Leah.
Leah Wilson: And action is important today. And so we’re giving you one way that you can take action, join Health Freedom Defense, and become that member, and follow these cases, talk about these cases, to share hope with your friends and family that things are being done on our behalf, and movement is being made.
Thank you so much, Leslie and George, for joining me today.
George Wentz: Thank you, Leah.
Leslie Manookian: Thank you, Leah.