A North Carolina federal judge has blocked the governor’s order to keep church services held inside a building limited to 10 or less, saying that “there is no pandemic exception” to the U.S. Constitution.
Judge James C. Dever III ruled on Saturday that Governor Roy Cooper (D)’s order restricted churches even more than essential businesses, which were restricted to 50% capacity and funeral services, which were limited to 50 people.
“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,” Dever ruled.
Cooper said the state would not appeal the ruling, but he continued to urge churches to follow the state guidelines voluntarily. “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,” Cooper’s spokesman Ford Porter said.
State by Democrat-run state, many of these oppressive rulings are beginning to fall, and churches have been the impetus in making it happen in a large portion of the challenges. It’s nice to know the First Amendment isn’t dead yet.