Despot-like Government Shutdowns: Only One Threat to Religious Freedom
By Dennis Jamison May 19, 2020
This past Sunday a wave of churches across the country opened for in-person worship services. It was part of an effort called “Peaceably Gather Sunday” where ministers and their respective congregations were seeking to hold a middle ground in balancing health and safety concerns against the coronavirus and still hold worship services without restrictions. These citizens are seeking a more religious path to deal with the shutdown of businesses, life as we have known it, and the threats to basic civil liberties—especially the right to worship God. People are also truly stressed over the loss of their jobs and their livelihoods, and their faith oftentimes gives them hope.
In Lynchburg, Virginia last Saturday a gathering of ministers met for the “Virginia Call for Prayer and Repentance.” Many in the church are becoming agitated over the loss of their right to attend their churches even when proper precautions are taken. Many ministers all across the country are concerned about the loss of religious freedom. And if such deeply revered freedoms are at risk in the United States, is it a sign of the loss of the Land of Liberty?
Where are the defenders of our loss of freedoms? Where is the ACLU when many Americans are currently distressed over their loss of civil liberties? In truth, many Americans lost their trust in such an overtly partisan “front group” long ago. Essentially, the ACLU is just a “non-essential” organization now. Consider their partisan “Emergency Declaration” to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic:
MARCH 13, 2020 WASHINGTON — President Trump today invoked emergency powers in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Below is comment from Hina Shamsi, director of the ACLU’s National Security Project, in response:
Use of emergency powers in this pandemic can be legitimate for measures grounded in science and public health and when consistent with the need to protect the health, safety, and civil liberties of us all. At the same time, history teaches that our government is most prone to committing abuses in times of crisis, and we must ensure that broad presidential powers are not misused beyond legitimate needs.
The ACLU will be watching closely to make sure any use of emergency powers in response to the pandemic is grounded in science and public health, not politics or discrimination. As the government takes the necessary steps to ensure public health, it must also safeguard people’s due process, privacy, and equal protection rights. We must regularly reevaluate the use of emergency powers to ensure they are effective, remain justified, and are properly employed.” (bold emphasis from Jamison)
It seems that the governors who have “properly employed” emergency powers are those who kept their states relatively open in light of a pandemic that did not live up to its MSM hype. And as for “emergency powers grounded in science,” the Leftist ACLU could not know “science” any more than it protects religious liberties. Within the past few months, more reliable studies, based on more accurate data have emerged from a number of doctors and scholars throughout the world. Many of these studies seriously question the underlying premise of whether COVID-19 is as highly contagious or as deadly as initially claimed. It is becoming clear that it may be a bit more deadly than the common flu, but not as deadly as early outrageous predictions.
Eight states within the United States weathered the COVID-19 “pandemic” with a more sane or well-balanced approach for all their citizens. But, in other states, citizens were harassed, hairdressers arrested and jailed, ministers arrested, and churchgoers fined because they were trying to deal with panic promulgated by the MSM and their fears of contracting some deadly disease. Today, many Americans witness oppressive actions from government leaders—usually state governors (not the POTUS), and usually Democrat governors (not Republican governors).
In 2020, in the Land of the Free, religious liberty is under attack from those who suffer from the “great and powerful OZ” illusion. Such attacks upon the people of faith are not yet as bad as the control and subversion of religion in Communist China. Yet, when state governors can get away with determining that a church service is “non-essential” activity, when legal cases involving internal religious issues are decided by corrupt secularist judges, and when ministers are arrested for “hate speech” for delivering a biblical message, there is a serious disease spreading across America, and it is not COVID-19. Precedents are being set that will determine the future of freedom.
Again, where is the ACLU when Americans are currently being abused by their governments? The short answer to that is that they are the “Democrat Civil Liberties Union,” and are only concerned with the loss of certain liberties (valued by Democrats). The ACLU is oblivious to the unalienable rights at the heart of the Declaration of Independence. Citizen rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights are outside the ACLU’s mission. Essentially in 2020, the mission of the ACLU has become “non-essential.” It may have been legitimate once in American history, but it is now just a front group for one political party.
Certainly, it is not in the ACLU’s jurisdiction to determine what constitutes the abuse of government power. Neither is it in the jurisdiction of any government to usurp the unalienable rights granted to the citizens by our Creator. Nevertheless, it is in the jurisdiction of “We the People” to judge what constitutes abuse of government power. And, this is such a time, even according to ACLU standards, the government is committing abuses against citizen rights. “We the People” need to ensure that government no longer abuses its authority.
Efforts of the secularists and the atheists whom we elect to office share a similar value system with the Chinese Communists. American citizens must no longer elect atheists and secularists who continue to undermine fundamental freedoms—especially religious freedom. Our American liberties were granted to citizens from God. “We the People” need to remember that the Declaration of Independence is an expression of faith and our manifesto for human freedom. It laid the foundation for the nation to be born.
There was no “expiration date” on unalienable rights. Today, American citizens must again embrace the Founders’ self-evident truths. We need to strengthen our firm grip on those inalienable Rights: Life, Liberty and the ability to pursue Happiness. Citizens need to fight to preserve our religious freedoms because the soil of religious freedom secures the roots of the Tree of Liberty.