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Federal Judge Overrules North Carolina Governorís Restrictions On Worship
The Federalist ^ | May 18, 2020 | Tristan Justice

Posted on 05/18/2020 3:02:46 PM PDT by Kaslin

A federal judge overturned North Carolina Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s orders Saturday that sought to cap religious services at no more than 10 people while businesses and other organizations in the state were left to accommodate up to 50.

The double standard, District Court Judge James C. Dever ruled in the Eastern District of North Carolina, was an overt show of distrust among those gathering to worship and deemed the directive illegal, according to the News and Observer.

“The record, at this admittedly early stage of the case, reveals that the Governor appears to trust citizens to perform non-religious activities indoors (such as shopping or working or selling merchandise) but does not trust them to do the same when they worship together indoors,” the judge wrote.

A state hearing on whether the governor’s directive will become permanent is slated to take place on May 29, but the judge’s decision bars the governor from taking action against those congregating for religious services. Cooper said he had no plans to appeal the judge’s ruling, the News and Observer reported.

“The court trusts worshipers and their leaders to look after one another and society while exercising their free exercise rights just as they and their fellow citizens (whether religious or not) do when engaged in non-religious activities,” Dever said, but still recommended institutions to follow responsible public health guidelines for social distancing.

“We don’t want indoor meetings to become hotspots for the virus and our health experts continue to warn that large groups sitting together inside for long periods of time are much more likely to cause the spread of COVID-19,” said Cooper’s spokesperson Ford Porter in response to the judge’s ruling. “While our office disagrees with the decision, we will not appeal, but instead urge houses of worship and their leaders to voluntarily follow public health guidance to keep their members safe.”

The judge’s order emerged from a case involving two Baptist churches filing a lawsuit against the governor last week arguing that Cooper’s order violated their First Amendment rights to worship.

The case is just the latest in a string of others challenging state and local orders over draconian lockdowns in an effort to curb the spread of the novel Wuhan coronavirus.

In April, U.S. Attorney General William Barr instructed U.S. attorneys to be on the lookout state and local ordinances that are potentially violating citizens’ civil liberties.

“Millions of Americans across the nation have been ordered to stay in their homes, leaving only for essential and necessary reasons, while countless businesses and other gathering places have been ordered to close their doors indefinitely,” Barr wrote in a department memo. “These kinds of restrictions have been necessary in order to stop the spread of a deadly disease – but there is no denying that they have imposed tremendous burdens on the daily lives of all Americans.”

As the nation approached Easter in mid-April, lockdowns remained in full-force prompting some churches to adapt to drive-in services. One Kentucky mayor however, sought to prohibit his city from conducting safe worship by threatening those who participated with arrest and criminal penalties. Federal District Court Judge Justin Walker however, who has since been nominated to a seat on the U.S. District Court blocked Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer’s threats however, declaring them unconstitutional and “beyond all reason.”


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Editorial; Government; News/Current Events; US: North Carolina
KEYWORDS: 1stamendment; church; classactionfodder; coronavirus; doj; dubyajudge; ednorthcarolina; firstamendment; freedomofassembly; freedomofrelgion; gregfischer; jamescdever; jamesdever; judiciary; justinwalker; kentucky; lockdowns; northcarolina; policestate; politicaljudiciary; reopen; roguelist; roycooper; shutdown; tyranny; williambarr
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1 posted on 05/18/2020 3:02:46 PM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

No clinging allowed!


2 posted on 05/18/2020 3:07:39 PM PDT by ConservativeInPA (It's official! I'm nominated for the 2020 Mr. Hyperbole and Sarcasm Award.)
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To: Kaslin

Thank-you God!


3 posted on 05/18/2020 3:08:02 PM PDT by Biggirl ("One Lord, one faith, one baptism" - Ephesians 4:5)
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To: Kaslin
In April, U.S. Attorney General William Barr instructed U.S. attorneys to be on the lookout state and local ordinances that are potentially violating citizens’ civil liberties.

How many of the petty tyrants are sitting in Gitmo waiting for their Military Tribunal?

4 posted on 05/18/2020 3:08:55 PM PDT by ASA Vet (Make American Intelligence Great Again. Bring back ASA.)
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To: ConservativeInPA

Yesterday, when I was at church to sing for the streaming service, our coordinators told me we can have 100 people next Sunday.


5 posted on 05/18/2020 3:16:32 PM PDT by Tax-chick (You can't buy happiness, but you can buy books! (Washington County, UT, Library))
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To: ASA Vet

In April, U.S. Attorney General William Barr instructed U.S. attorneys to be on the lookout

**************

In April...be on the lookout. Yeah, right. What actions exactly has the DOJ taken since then — despite obvious violations?


6 posted on 05/18/2020 3:17:18 PM PDT by Starboard
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To: Tax-chick

How WHITE of them!!


7 posted on 05/18/2020 3:19:39 PM PDT by Ann Archy (Abortion....... The HUMAN Sacrifice to the god of Convenience.)
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To: Starboard
What actions exactly has the DOJ taken since then — despite obvious violations?

None, Barr fire those U.S. Attorneys who ignored the directive.

8 posted on 05/18/2020 3:24:41 PM PDT by ASA Vet (Make American Intelligence Great Again. Bring back ASA.)
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To: Ann Archy

Phil is Italian and Don Fabio is Peruvian.


9 posted on 05/18/2020 3:26:51 PM PDT by Tax-chick (You can't buy happiness, but you can buy books! (Washington County, UT, Library))
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To: All

I’ll bet it’s a long time before we see anymore rats slip into the Governor’s chair in red states.


10 posted on 05/18/2020 3:30:37 PM PDT by gibsonguy
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To: Tax-chick

Awesome. Up here the Bishops are scared of their own shadow. There was a brief window where weddings, while allowed, only could take place with the couple, two witnesses, and the priest—but the Bishop thought that even that was too much and put a total ban in place. In the brief window between the ban being announced and going into effect, four of our seniors and another couple connected with the school who were all engaged moved up wedding dates to beat the ban.

Even where things have not been so draconian, small weddings and shortened engagements have become the new fad in the Catholic circles I circulate in.


11 posted on 05/18/2020 3:34:30 PM PDT by Hieronymus (¬ďI shall drink to the Pope, if you please, still, to conscience first, and to the Pope afterwards.¬)
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To: Tax-chick

Good grief....have you never heard that before??


12 posted on 05/18/2020 3:46:13 PM PDT by Ann Archy (Abortion....... The HUMAN Sacrifice to the god of Convenience.)
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To: Hieronymus

Oh, school-seniors, not senior citizens. I associate with old people *a lot*!

I think the 100 people at my parish is based on the size of the facility. The setup committee measured everything and did some math regarding six-foot radii and so on. Phil told me they’ll be using the plastic chair (from the overflow area and the parish hall) instead of the cushioned ones. I asked if they were giving away the cushioned ones, because I picked one up out of the back hall a few months ago - “I’m taking this chair, okay?” “Good!” and our cats love it.

At the Spanish Mass for the streaming service, we’ve had between ten and twenty people each, counting musicians, lectors, the a/v guy, and random folks who show up.


13 posted on 05/18/2020 3:47:43 PM PDT by Tax-chick (You can't buy happiness, but you can buy books! (Washington County, UT, Library))
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To: Ann Archy

I was confused by the usage in this context.


14 posted on 05/18/2020 3:48:12 PM PDT by Tax-chick (You can't buy happiness, but you can buy books! (Washington County, UT, Library))
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To: Tax-chick

It just means “how NICE of them to do this for us peons”.


15 posted on 05/18/2020 3:52:07 PM PDT by Ann Archy (Abortion....... The HUMAN Sacrifice to the god of Convenience.)
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To: Tax-chick

These are more the sorts of people who would be into axe throwing.


16 posted on 05/18/2020 3:55:50 PM PDT by Hieronymus (¬ďI shall drink to the Pope, if you please, still, to conscience first, and to the Pope afterwards.¬)
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To: Kaslin

Gov. Roy Cooper is a democrat. Did you expect anything else out of him?


17 posted on 05/18/2020 4:22:15 PM PDT by maxwellsmart_agent
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To: Hieronymus

A good foundation for marriage!


18 posted on 05/18/2020 5:44:22 PM PDT by Tax-chick (You can't buy happiness, but you can buy books! (Washington County, UT, Library))
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To: Tax-chick

Especially if you heat with wood and want to provide your own wholesome family entertainment.


19 posted on 05/18/2020 5:48:53 PM PDT by Hieronymus (¬ďI shall drink to the Pope, if you please, still, to conscience first, and to the Pope afterwards.¬)
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To: Ann Archy

Phil and Fabio are just following instructions from our pastor.


20 posted on 05/18/2020 5:49:55 PM PDT by Tax-chick (You can't buy happiness, but you can buy books! (Washington County, UT, Library))
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