Throughout the Lockdown, I have constantly read that the prohibitions on assembling for worship decreed by many states and local governments were NOT persecution. Why? Because they applied to ALL gatherings and assemblies and activities, not just to religious gatherings and activities.
Except, of course, people writing that claim were wrong.
There WERE usually special provisions that exempted many so-called essential activities. These included grocery shopping and pharmacy visits, and incredibly, liquor stores and lotto ticket sales and recreational (as well as medicinal) cannabis shops. In some states, you could have 200 or 300 people in a supermarket or a big-box store – but not 10 people in a church building. And in a few states (Washington, for example), you couldn’t have ANY persons assembled – even in a private home – for religious purposes.
I do not see ANY way that is NOT an attack on religions. This recent graphic from Pew Research Center (left-wing and no friend of religion or liberty) demonstrates that in late April, that is STILL the case.
Count them: NINE states (not counting Montana) STILL (as of 27 April 2020) PROHIBIT RELIGIOUS ASSEMBLIES. And in the other forty-one states, there are THOUSANDS of local jurisdictions where the tyrants are prohibiting religious gatherings – in some cases even when those gathered are all locked inside their closed cars in a parking lot. Even when those gathered are keeping their “social distance” of six feet apart (as someone described it, the wingspan of a turkey vulture!).
One of those is New York, which apparently is ONLY prohibiting Christian and Jewish assemblies: not Muslim, Hindu, or other religions. Go figure. (To say nothing of the vicious threat against Jewish congregations by de Blasio of NYC in the last few days. Some stories say he is now “sorry” for his threat. Maybe someone in NYC told him that old quote, “Never Again!” And explained just what that meant.)
My family and I are blessed beyond belief that we are all presently in South Dakota, where not even the local cities and towns dared attempt to do this. But most Americans do NOT. And more than six weeks into the Panic, THREE of the most FIVE populous States STILL are forbidding people to practice their religions. Indeed, only FIFTEEN States did not ignore this First Amendment freedom: many specifically applying prohibitions specifically to churches and synagogues.
Please, please, explain to me, all you people who claimed that there was no religious discrimination or persecution involved, just HOW that could be justified six weeks ago, or yesterday!
In the Bible, in Romans 13, acceptable government for those who follow Christ Jesus is clearly defined. “For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have its approval. 4 For government is God’s servant for your good.” For those of you who believe that God “ordained” government and therefore that involuntary government is “good” surely can accept that it is good in God’s eyes ONLY if it does what is good: what is stated here in the Bible.
These nine State governments in NO WAY meet God’s standards.
It is GOOD that the US Department of Justice states they are going after State governments which are denying essential rights – Constitutional rights – rights given by God. But more is needed: people (individuals especially) need to go to court to demand liberty and justice – to remove these thugs from office. And people in groups: churches and other religious organizations, also need to defend themselves against this tyranny and take legal action in court and other ways to remove these tyrants, these dictators, from power.
But more than just “petitions for redress” (under which I put court actions) is needed. The solution is rebellion. As Peter said so long ago, “We must obey God rather than men.”