Calvary Chapel in Silicon Valley refused to close during the Covid lockdowns, arguing freedom of religion. Then the government surveillance began.
I find many people treat the Freedom of Religion piece of the first amendment as virtually inoperable because they, themselves, are not religious, and increasingly our society is not either.
However, after seeing how easily the government has cast aside our speech rights (as shown in the Twitter Files) and our press rights (look at what happened to Taibbi and Shellenberger in front of the House committee last week), I would urge everyone treat these rights as all one-in-the-same.
If one falls, they all fall. Either we all enjoy liberty, or none of us do.
This fight is all of our fights.
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The selectivity of Covid "enforcement" demonstrated the Left's totalitarian predilections very clearly. Walmart could be open, but small businesses could not. In some areas, certain items (such as gardening supplies) were forbidden to be purchased, even though the store was allowed to be open. Churches could not hold services, even if they were held outdoors, with parishioners sitting in their own socially-distanced cars in the parking lot.
What was and wasn't allowed tracked very closely with Leftist ideologies. That should have been a very large red flag. But some still refuse to see it (largely the types who still drive around masked in their own cars).
I have family in LA County, and when we visited at the height of pandemic, we travelled to Orange County where there was very little restrictions. The totalitarian control of liberals is astounding, and seeing how an adjoining county functioned compared to LA, put it all into perspective for me.
When you combine California threatening to cut off the electricity of churches with the CDC voting unanimously to recommend the vaccine for 2-year-olds, it really could not be more clear that modern Democrats are just high-functioning psychopaths………..or low-functioning.
“First, in August 2020, another church next door gave the state permission to let enforcement officers spy on Calvary’s faithful through a chain-link fence on its property”
It’s hard to get people to understand this because the problem with fascism is that real fascism *has* been tried so when there aren’t tall black boots and fiery balcony speeches people think
“Oh this isn’t fascism they aren’t marching with their legs up high.”
The real problem is that ideally you would want to stop the Nazis *before* they build the camps, but the pre-camps phase we are currently in is not easily recognized as Nazism by most people. Oh well. Just buy some extra food and water because they will turn off your bank and utilities with a Cheshire grin.
I have yet to see who was behind the decision to keep people out of churches, but say we were "allowed" to go to Home Depot and Target. As if they were Covid free... and stocked items hadn't been touched by everyone. And don't get me started on the handgun used daily by people for self checkout. A small bookstore and my hair dresser were shut down due to imminent death from Covid. Home Depot was Covid free! And the masses got in line and went along with it... which was actually the most troubling.
No one will be held accountable. They won't ever apologize.
"To go to a church where you could see people smiling and have a conversation took away the hopelessness."
Well, see, that's that problem. If you have hope then you won't feel the need to abdigate your rights and freedom in order for Big Brother to save you. We just can't have that! Stay inside and go insane online instead of going to church, fer yer health!
"the county noted that it is proud of its public health orders, which resulted 'in one of the lowest death rates of any major county in the United States.'" Lowest death rates... from covid... maybe. What about increases in unemployment, drug/alcohol abuse and addiction, domestic violence, and general always-online-induced hysteria?
It is supremely ironic that California has morphed from one of the most entrepreneurial, creative states to one of the most egregiously authoritarian. And they keep voting for more of the same. How is anyone better off under such a stifling regime?
I did not see the word "snitches" in this piece but it sure did come to.mind. Maybe a silver lining from the past three years is that snitching is now socially acceptable on the left ( sarcasm intended as I have been schooled in the past on these posts and others to make that clear!). Let us not forget that there were thousands if not millions of our fellow citizens who wanted to actually put non vaxxed people in JAIL ( no sarcasm as that is a fact).
“The Christians of Calvary Chapel argue it’s their constitutional right to weigh the physical risks of Covid-19 against the mental and spiritual risks of missing church.”
No. They have constitutional right regardless of whether or not they are weighing risks to ‘public health’, which is a fake discipline and an intentionally vague term designed to facilitate fascism.
Hopefully there will be a reckoning for all the lockdown proponents who inflicted tremendous harm upon the public. It starts at the ballot box.
This piece makes my blood boil, especially after seeing Gavin Newsom taking his child to private school while claiming it was too dangerous to open public schools and closing restaurants while allowing movie caterers to operate freely. Then there was the French Laundry. It was and is obvious that these restrictions were selectively applied and backed by sketchy science. Moreover, the length of time involved, the lack of reporting on other countries with different policies says to me that we are dealing with a bunch of petty power brokers and “good Germans” who should be ashamed of themselves. This lengthy lockdown was unsuccessful as a public health approach and a disgraceful episode in American history. Next, please report on current college Covid vaccine mandates (even including boosters). The UK and Denmark don’t even recommend Covid shots for this age group. Here, to access an education, you have to comply. Wake up people. Whatever this is, it isn’t science.
Great piece by Heather! I’m a fan, admittedly, and she’s a good friend of mine too.
The parties in this lawsuit both need to pipe down.
It is true that hindsight is 20/20, and also true that the masking issue remains politicized well beyond the point of ridiculousness.
I previously commented that the way people use masks in public is akin to licking a vacuum cleaner’s dust filter. As a retired surgeon, I can vouch after wearing these things for 30+ years they don’t do much for aerosolized viruses. Just ask any ENT or gynecologist about their experiences lasering HPV lesions, and that’s in a controlled environment, or look at the studies from the early days of the HIV epidemic that found patient blood in the nasal cavities of masked surgeons after procedures.
Masks keep nose hairs and boogers out of surgical wounds, and that’s a good thing! But I think there’s a general consensus that viral isolation requires a space suit with HEPA filtration. All the articles and posturing about face masks have proven difficult to interpret which proves only one thing, which is the mask effect is negligible, if any.
So, from my perspective, the mere fact that Santa Clara County dropped the public gathering complaint (after the Supreme Court ruling), makes the remainder of the case into an issue which if properly lawyered, juried, and adjudicated an easy win for the church.
But, this is California, and asking for impartiality is magical thinking.
We already know what happens if this ladders it’s way up through the appellate courts. The mask issue has been decided in favor of independent decision making by the appellate courts.
The real danger here is that if a very lethal bug gets loose, the trust and faith in our public health system has been eroded to the point of no return.
“The pastor said he welcomed the agents who entered the church and identified themselves as working for the county.
‘We liked them,’ McClure said of the officials. ‘We gave them coffee, food, and the gospel. They were doing their jobs.’”
My favorite part of the whole story. The agents were doing their job and God, through Rev. McClure, was doing His.
My friend attends this church. Rev. McClure views every attack by the government, including the suit, as an opportunity to witness to a fallen world.
I fear scenarios such as this increasingly are what we as Christians will face in a “post-Christian” culture. Seriously, how were Santa Clara County’s surveillance tactics any different from those deployed by the Chinese government against dissidents?
Remain steadfast, people of Calvary.
“For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.” 1 Cor. 1:25
It's now pretty clear that the lockdowns never prevented Covid and did more harm than good, destroying the economy, jobs and lives. It's also becoming clear that the mask edicts - which allowed any face covering, no matter how dirty and reused - also did no good and probably harmed children. Same with forced injections of a vaccine that neither prevents Covid nor is completely safe as was claimed and should never have been forced on healthy people or those with natural immunity. But we'll never know for certain until we have an unbiased investigation of the facts detailing all the harm. Only then will be be able to show that the hysterical, panicked and tyrannical edicts of the nitwits we elect had no factual underpinning and were, therefore, unlawful as being arbitrary and capricious. Even more important, we need to understand that giving untrammeled power to government - no matter the reason - is a Faustian bargain; a deal with the devil. Free, independent and self-reliant do not do - or countenance - such things. What Covid really requires is a deep look into ourselves and a reflection on why we let ourselves turn into a bizarre, Twilight Zone version of the panicked, fearful and ultimately murderous residents of the neighborhood that turned on each other when the lights went out.
I guarantee you that there were throngs of county and state officials who joyfully violated all those same laws they used to try to shut down the church