Congratulations to the Governor, DPHHS, and the "Health Advocates'

While you are having a lovely Christmas with your families this season...

Please keep in your thoughts, the hundreds of families that just learned that they lost their jobs, or if they haven't today they will within the month. You see, 65 to 74% of sales are now gone. No business can survive for four months.

Please remember that they have kids too. And their parents now have to worry if they can pay the rent next month if they don't find a real job during the holidays.

And keep in your mind, that your freedoms are gone, as mine. You see the government just banned and condemned small businesses across the state of Montana. A legal product that was sold in state licensed stores. Forcing them out of business.

As you take these small businesses down, just know that you took away, not only their livelihood, but everything they sacrificed to build it. All of these small businesses, like me, started by risking everything they had to invest in their future. That was just stripped from them.

Now they face having to liquidate their inventory, lay off employees, try to negotiate getting out of a lease or 3, cancel merchant service contracts, cancel many services that helped other local businesses, and on and on.

All of this just a week before Christmas. Can any of these people now enjoy their holidays?

They also condemned people to stay on cigarettes, that kill 480,000 people a year. That one is the worst.

Montana will soon find out that this ban will take enormous amounts of revenue from the state.

As businesses close, there will no longer be fees paid for licenses, business taxes, or payroll taxes.

Unemployment will have to be paid out. But remember, the business will no longer be contributing to that. Or the workman's comp fund.

Storefronts will now be empty. So the people who were making a living leasing those out, will now have to find new tenants.

But what if it's a farmers market type business? Maybe the government will come for them. There has been a lot of problems with produce lately. Why wouldn't they come for them? Next, no more personal gardens?

If this can happen to my small business, it will happen to yours.

Montana officials have just shown you that they can take anyone's business by the stroke of a pen.

Please say prayers for these people while you enjoy your Christmas.

— Deanna Marshall, Hamilton