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Effective 2/6/21, the state of California will allow indoor worship services, with attendance limited to 25% of capacity. The revised public health order can be found here.

The health order says the linked guidance found here for places of worship is being updated. The document, COVID-19 Industry Guidance: Places of Worship and Providers of Religious Services and Cultural Ceremonies, requires social distancing and specific cleaning protocols.

It also bans singing and chanting.

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First Amendment text of the US Constitution on old parchment paper. Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

In two rulings late on Friday, 2/5/21, the Supreme Court issued emergency injunctions in favor of two California churches allowing them to resume in-person worship services on 2/7/21.

The longer ruling with multiple concurring or dissenting opinions was issued on behalf of South Bay United Pentecostal Church, located in San Diego. The follow-on injunction, issued after the first, is shorter. It was issued on behalf of Harvest Rock Church, with its main campus in Pasadena, California and a large number of other campus locations around the state.

The day after the rulings were issued, Gov. Newsom’s office said the state will revise its public health orders regarding indoor worship services. For a brief reference on the issue see In Valley Daily bulletin on 2/6/21 – Newsom says state will revise indoor worship guides after Supreme Court ruling.

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Well, that didn’t take long.

On Thursday, 1/21/21 the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals denied an appeal from South Bay United Pentecostal Church, in Chula Vista, California, requesting an injunction to allow them to worship indoors.

On Monday, 1/25/21, the church filed an emergency appeal with the United States Supreme Court requesting an immediate injunction.

This case was discussed yesterday: With eyes tightly closed, District courts and Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals rule than ban on indoor worship is a perfectly acceptable infringement on Free Exercise clause.

To end the irreparable harm caused by unwarranted infringement on free exercise clause of the First Amendment, the church requested an injunction in order to allow worship by 1/31/21. The state of California has until 1/29/21 to file their response.

The church’s attorney explained why the church is back at the Supreme Court and why church leadership is so confident SCOTUS will issue an injunction:

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Two federal district judges and two different panels of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals closed their eyes ever so tightly to prevent them from reading either the First Amendment or the very strong, very clear Supreme Court injunctions as they ruled that California’s rule prohibiting all indoor worship while in tier 4 is perfectly fine.

Pasadena News reports on 1/25/21 Harvest Rock Church Wins One, Loses One.

Catholic News Agency reports on 1/25/21 Appeals court rules on California churches that challenged Covid restrictions.

10 News reports on 1/23/21 – Appeals Court denies Chula Vista churches request reopen (sic)

Harvest Rock

Harvest Rock’s lawsuit against the ban on indoor worship service was reheard by the District Court after the Supreme Court issued a powerful injunction shredding every rationalization for banning worship services.

In spite of the exquisitely clear explanation in the injunction, on 12/22/20 the District Court found the restrictions on indoor worship to be perfectly reasonable and not at all an infringement on the First Amendment.

Harvest Rock appealed the decision. Sometime late last week (exact date is not clear to me) a panel of the 9th Circuit ruled against the church, finding the ban on indoor worship was acceptable.

While the panel’s inability to read Supreme Court injunctions is as surprising as it is unfortunate, the good news is this clears the way for the Supreme Court to address the issue directly. Again.

The church is moving forward with an appeal to the Supreme Court.

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When done to a 60 year old building that destruction is understandable. When done to an economy, not so much. Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

The government ordered shutdown of the economy in 2020 has devastated primary education, secondary education, higher education, travel industry, entertainment industry, small businesses, restaurants, physical health, mental health, and detective/ preventive treatment of chronic and deadly disease. Level of unemployment is second only to the Great Depression. We have seen evaporation of wealth, savings, trust in government officials at all levels, and trust in every public health official in the country.

I have over 100 posts protesting the foolishness and destruction this year with those posts containing close to 90,000 words describing the devastation.

This will be the last routine post describing the intentional disruption we have suffered this year. I will have one more post describing actual science that is surfacing, which is in sharp contrast to the alleged “science” that has driven the demolition of the country.

Discussion in this post:

  • Devastation in travel industry
  • Drastic increase in U.S. poverty rate
  • Collapse of incoming freshman class at U.S. colleges

Indicators of the devastation in the travel industry

11/4/20 – Wall Street Journal – How Coronavirus Ravaged Travel in 2020 – The Middle Seat column tabulated a number of indicators showing the illness across entire travel industry.

What does the collapse of an entire industry look like? A few stats:

Traffic at three largest New York airports:

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There are so many elected officials, political leaders, and public health officials ignoring the rules they demand you and I follow that two different websites are accumulating a list of the incidents.

Covid Hypocrisy: Policymakers Breaking Their Own Rules

Visualization from Heritage.org tracks incidents in the United States. A map shows location and provides one sentence summary.

Detail of incidence are listed, which includes date, name of the public official betraying the public trust, location, and description of incident. The description includes a link to news article explaining the hypocrisy.

On 12/24/20 I count 42 incidents. As you would expect, California is in the lead with eight incidents if you include the legislator’s junket to Hawaii for a vacation funded by lobbyists.

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First Amendment of the US Constitution text. Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

Don’t know what you have read of the Supreme Court decision that has restored the free expression clause to the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

This ruling is significant because SCOTUS has issued three additional temporary injunctions citing this specific ruling when ordering the District Court to reconsider their incorrect decision.

Several sentences in the ruling have been widely quoted.

After reading the full decision, I realize it is stronger than I realized. Harsh even.

I have brought plenty of sarcasm and ridicule to bear discussing the attacks on the First Amendment willfully carried out by many politicians and public health officials. My point-and-laugh-out-loud efforts pale in comparison to comments from the ruling and several concurring arguments.

The Supreme Court injunction is titled ROMAN CATHOLIC DIOCESE OF BROOKLYN, NEW YORK v. ANDREW M. CUOMO, GOVERNOR OF NEW YORK.

Link to the text can be found at No. 20A87 with the actual text found here.

I will quote a large number of the specific comments in the ruling with a few of my observations

Comments from unsigned opinion:

Some background:

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At least one person on the constantly growing list of flaming hypocrites in public leadership has a sense of shame. Or, at least enough shame to realize she should retire. Eventually. Someday.

After two days of publicity about her non-Thanksgiving non-celebration trip to spend the Thanksgiving weekend with family she doesn’t live with, Dr. Deborah Birx made the announcement.

12/22/20 – National Review – Dr. Birx Announces She Will Retire after Holiday Travel Controversy and CBS news – Birx says she plans to retire, citing strain on family.

After two full days of controversy, Dr. Birx announced she will retire shortly after assisting in the transition to a new administration. Presumably, that means sometime in late January or early February. Or maybe March. Or maybe June.

Recall from yesterday the day after Thanksgiving she traveled from her home in D.C. to one of her vacation homes in Delaware for a 50 hour stay with her daughter, son-in-law, and two grandchildren, all of whom live in a different home she owns in Potomac.

When challenged about whether traveling to another state with people from a different household during the Thanksgiving weekend was appropriate given her very public advice not to travel at all over the weekend and not to be with anyone from a different household, she provided a splendiferous rationalization.

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