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Today’s quotable

Friday, May 22, 2020

* United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit the other day on a motion for an emergency injunction filed by Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church

IT IS ORDERED that plaintiffs-appellants’ emergency motion for an injunction pending appeal, filed on May 15, 2020, is DENIED. Based on this court’s preliminary review of this appeal for purposes of this motion, we find that plaintiffs have not shown a sufficient likelihood of success on the merits to warrant the extraordinary relief of an injunction pending appeal.

The Governor’s Executive Order 2020-32 responds to an extraordinary public health emergency. See generally Jacobson v. Massachusetts, 197 U.S. 11 (1905). The Executive Order does not discriminate against religious activities, nor does it show hostility toward religion. It appears instead to impose neutral and generally applicable rules, as in Employment Division v. Smith, 494 U.S. 872 (1990).

The Executive Order’s temporary numerical restrictions on public gatherings apply not only to worship services but also to the most comparable types of secular gatherings, such as concerts, lectures, theatrical performances, or choir practices, in which groups of people gather together for extended periods, especially where speech and singing feature prominently and raise risks of transmitting the COVID-19 virus.

Worship services do not seem comparable to secular activities permitted under the Executive Order, such as shopping, in which people do not congregate or remain for extended periods. Further, plaintiffs- appellants may not obtain injunctive relief against the Governor in federal court on the basis of the Illinois Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Frank H. Easterbrook, Michael Stephen Kanne and David Hamilton issued the order. Easterbrook and Kanne were both nominated by President Ronald Reagan.

…Adding… As if on cue…

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Huh? - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 12:57 pm:

    What don’t religious groups understand about “no”? The “n” or the “o”?

  2. - Oswego Willy - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:03 pm:

    Matthew 6:5

    And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are: for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.

    Matthew 18:20

    For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

    Even Scripture sees the essential part of worship being between God and each one of us.

    There’s no… “unless there’s 150 people… this isn’t worship”

  3. - Hippopotamus - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:06 pm:

    Coming soon, “religious people represent an inherent danger to the social order”. You know, because of that belief in the life after thing.

  4. - Pot calling kettle - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:06 pm:

    Places of worship have been focal points of the spread of this virus because, people congregate in a confined space for an extended period. Many (most?) religious leaders recognize this, but some clearly do not.

  5. - Moe Berg - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:11 pm:

    A cynic might think much of this has more to do with the passing of the collection plate than it does with the praising of the Lord.

    But, that’s cynics for you.

  6. - revvedup - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:22 pm:

    Glad the Feds could see the obvious that the EOs are valid exercises of emergency powers, and that the appeal will very likely also fail due to a complete lack of legal support for the Plaintiff’s claims. Then we’ll have a Federal precedent covering IL/IN/WI, which State courts may consider as “persuasive authority” going forward as well.

  7. - Pundent - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:29 pm:

    Cue the war on religion cries. Church is no more essential than baseball, the NBA, concerts, parades, or any number of mass gatherings that aren’t taking place.

  8. - Ron Burgundy - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:29 pm:

    The Seventh Circuit ruling was correct. Also, I’m sure our President is just champing at the bit to be first in line to attend services.

  9. - Huh? - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:34 pm:

    Appeal to SCOTUS in 3 … 2… 1 …

  10. - Roadrager - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:36 pm:

    The perfect Trump executive action. He doesn’t have the power to do anything, but says he’s done it anyway. So when nothing happens, he can blame those no-good, godless Democrat governors for keeping good Christian Americans away from Jesus.

  11. - Henry Francis - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:36 pm:

    This plays nicely with Fox and their ilk’s battles against science (facts) as it contradicts religion (faith).

    Why would they want people to disregard facts and go on faith?

  12. - Norseman - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:37 pm:

    When I was in Sunday school and confirmation class, I must have missed the part where Christ said you can’t believe in him or God the Father unless you were in a building.

    Somehow I thought Christianity was about caring for your fellow man.

  13. - West Side the Best Side - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:38 pm:

    On Chicago Tonight last night Pastor Reginald Sharpe Jr. of Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church indicated he is not pushing for his and other churches to be reopened by noting “I have decided that it’s best for us to wait because our job is not just to feed the people, but also fight off the wolves.” It’s rather ironic that Trump, probably the least religious or spiritual President ever, who can’t even be charitable at the National Prayer Breakfast, is pushing for churches to reopen. Two Corinthians must have stopped by and talked him into it.

  14. - Ducky LaMoore - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 1:56 pm:

    Church is essential. That is why it is streamed on Facebook (my church anyway). Has anybody out there actually stopped worshiping because of the virus? I haven’t.

  15. - Unstable Genius - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 2:00 pm:

    Suggestion to Churches - Make a Sunday brunch reservation for all the outdoor tables at the largest restaurant in town and have your services there - already approved by the Governor

  16. - RNUG - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 2:03 pm:

    == Has anybody out there actually stopped worshiping because of the virus? ==

    I haven’t. Facebook Live most the time, and drive-in service when the grassy field is dry enough to park cars on it … which it probably won’t be this weekend.

  17. - Yiddishcowboy - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 2:11 pm:

    My family and I “attend” Sabbath/Shabbat services and other events via Zoom. Do I wish we were able to attend in person? Sure. But our Rabbi and the members of the shul realize we don’t need a building, or to be in a building, to pray, to celebrate life-cycle events and to be good Jews.

  18. - OneMan - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 2:35 pm:

    One of the very few places in my life where I am still one of the ‘younger guys’ is service at my Church.
    Do I miss chatting with some folks, you betcha, that is why I call them on the phone. That is why we check up on one 92-year-old widow and bring her groceries when she needs them and vodka when she needs it.

    I love and care about my fellow congregants to much to be close to them. With a spouse in healthcare, the best thing we can do for our church family is to stay away.

  19. - Fixer - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 2:42 pm:

    Has anyone tried explaining federalism to the president yet? If not, can they please broadcast it live?

  20. - Pot calling kettle - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 2:58 pm:

    === Has anyone tried explaining federalism to the president yet?===

    The President governs by grandstanding. His close followers do the same. Federalism only applies when it works in their favor.

  21. - tully monster - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 3:57 pm:

    Plenty of churches accept this as a necessary precaution. We’re not happy with it–nobody is–but we’re not blaming the governor. It’s something that has to be done. And it’s not without precedent:

  22. - Huh? - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 5:03 pm:

    “Church is essential”

    Um. No.

    Have you ever toiled in the belly of the religio-industrial complex? I have. It ain’t anything like what you see during a sunday service.

    Will have to agree to disagree about the necessity of church.

  23. - Yiddishcowboy - Friday, May 22, 20 @ 5:23 pm:

    @ tully monster: You are so correct. People, in general, need to realize that the foolishness of a small handful of churches shouldn’t bring with it a generalization that *all* churches are being zealous fools. G-d bless and stay safe.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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