NEW YORK, NEW YORK - DECEMBER 11: A restaurant employee moves between tables outside of a restaurant in Manhattan on December 11, 2020 in New York City. New York’s governor, Andrew Cuomo, has announced the close of indoor dining starting this Monday as hospitalization rates continue to increase in New York City. Currently there are over 4,800 COVID-19 patients are now hospitalized statewide, which is double the amount reported on November 18 and the highest number of hospitalizations since May 22. Restaurants in New York City, one of the most important business sectors, are already closing at alarming rates due to various health restrictions, a lack of tourism and the disappearance of business clients. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
A growing number of restaurants nationwide are opening for indoor dining in defiance of strict COVID-19 regulations in their states, saying they are targeted unfairly and are barely hanging on. In Oregon, a movement to defy an indoor-dining ban began quietly on Jan. 1 and is gaining steam despite warnings from state inspectors and surging COVID-19 case numbers. Democratic Gov. Kate Brown has also threatened restaurants with the revocation of liquor and slot machine licenses in a standoff that’s increasingly attracting the attention of far-right groups such as the People’s Rights network. Similar revolts have also played out in places with strict COVID-19 rules, including Michigan, Pennsylvania, Washington and California.