News Flash: The United States Constitution still exists! Somebody had better let our state and federal government officials know this because they are acting like they can suspend our natural rights during a pandemic.
Freedom of religion and assembly are under attack in this country, and very few people in government seem to care. Before critics jump down my throat, I want to say for the millionth time that I am not downplaying the severity of the coronavirus. Of course it’s bad, and our federal and state governments must take action to keep us safe.
However, that doesn’t mean they can suspend the rights guaranteed by the Constitution. Churches are being forced to close—right before Easter, no less—and public assembly is banned. Both of these are rights enshrined in the First Amendment of the Constitution. It is time we discuss the ethics of government action as it relates to this crisis and the dangerous precedent it sets for the future of liberty in this country.
In Tampa Bay, Florida, a pastor has been arrested for holding a church service over the weekend. USA Today reported, “Officials arrested the pastor of a megachurch after detectives said he held two Sunday services with hundreds of people and violated a safer-at-home order in place to limit the spread of the coronavirus.
According to jail records, Pastor Rodney Howard-Browne turned himself in to authorities Monday afternoon in Hernando County, where he lives. He was charged with unlawful assembly and violation of a public health emergency order. Bail was set at $500, according to the jail’s website, and he was released after posting bond.”
It is worth noting that the church took precautions to keep the virus from spreading. The pastor’s law firm released the following statement: “Not only did the church comply with the administrative order regarding six-foot distancing, it went beyond any other businesses to ensure the health and safety of the people. Contrary to Sheriff Chronister’s allegation that Pastor Howard-Browne was ‘reckless,’ the actions of Hillsborough County and the Hernando County Sheriff are discriminatory against religion and church gatherings.”
But while churches are being deemed non-essential, abortion clinics are still somehow classified as essential. That’s right, abortion clinics are allowed to remain open. Left-wing site Buzzfeed reported, “Federal judges issued orders requiring Texas, Ohio, and Alabama to allow abortion clinics to stay open and keep providing services Monday, hours after a coalition of reproductive rights groups filed a series of lawsuits to prevent states from banning abortion due to the coronavirus outbreak.”
So, authorities are saying that we need to close churches to protect lives, but they can keep abortion clinics open to end lives. Try and figure that logic out.
The media is piling on religion as well. Mike Lindel, founder of My Pillow, announced at a press conference with President Trump that he would be rerouting his production from pillows to manufacturing face masks to stop the spread of the virus. During the announcement, he went off-script to talk about the importance of faith during these difficult times. He said, “I encourage you to use this time at home to get back in the Word, read our Bibles, and spend time with our families.”
Naturally, the media lost their collective minds over Lindell’s pro-Christian message. John Ziegler of Mediate tweeted, “Let’s be very clear. Mike Lindell, with whom I was once forced to be on at least an hour-long conference call, is WAY more insane than Trump. It’s not even close. Even Diamond & Silk are far more credible than he is.”
Executive Editor of CNN Ram Ramgopal tweeted, “In case you were wondering what My Pillow is doing in a time of coronavirus.” That tweet was made in reference to Lindell’s White House appearance.
The Palmer Report tweeted, “American hospitals have refrigerator trucks full of dead bodies parked around back, but sure, let’s all hear from the My Pillow guy.”
Freedom of religion is under attack in public life and these people couldn’t be happier. We need to wake up as a country before religion is considered non-essential permanently.