Racial Lawsuit Filed Over Banning Of White People For Grant

On Wednesday, a former policeman who owns a firearms safety instruction company in Massachusetts sued the state over a small business COVID relief program alleging discrimination because the funding is limited to owners who are women, minorities, immigrants, disabled, and LGBT, The Daily Caller reported.

Brian Dalton, who owns New England Firearms Academy, is alleging in the complaint that the Massachusetts “Inclusive Recovery Grant Program,” which offers up to $75,000 to small businesses, violates the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment because it illegally excludes white, heterosexual males.

According to the Pacific Legal Foundation, the group representing Dalton, the former police officer was eager to apply for the fund after it was enacted in November. But when the program was launched 5 months later, Dalton discovered that while he met the financial, staffing, and business requirements, he was not eligible because he is a white male.

In the complaint, Pacific Legal argues that the state’s COVID response “nearly destroyed” Dalton’s business and he “welcomes the opportunity to get back on track,” but Massachusetts “won’t give him a fair shot.”

The program was designed to “support small businesses” that were “negatively impacted” by the pandemic lockdowns. During the pandemic, Dalton’s business was forced to shut down for three months, depriving it of revenue, according to Pacific Legal.

In a statement on Wednesday, Andrew Quinio, an attorney with Pacific Legal, said opportunity should not depend on sexual orientation, gender, or race, including the opportunity to be eligible “for government programs.”

Quinio described the requirements in the state’s “Inclusive Recovery Grant” as “unequivocally wrong and unlawful.” He added that the US Constitution “thankfully” protects business owners from the “discriminatory actions” of Massachusetts.

The lawsuit, which was filed in the District Court for the Eastern District of Massachusetts, names as defendants Yvonne Hao, the Secretary of Economic Development, and the Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation, along with its CEO Lawrence Andrews.