• This is a political forum that is non-biased/non-partisan and treats every persons position on topics equally. This debate forum is not aligned to any political party. In today's politics, many ideas are split between and even within all the political parties. Often we find ourselves agreeing on one platform but some topics break our mold. We are here to discuss them in a civil political debate. If this is your first visit to our political forums, be sure to check out the RULES. Registering for debate politics is necessary before posting. Register today to participate - it's free!

Two Colorado churches win lawsuit against state's Covid-19 mask and crowd limit requirements

Somerville

DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 29, 2012
Messages
14,558
Reaction score
5,896
Location
On an island. Not that one!
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Socialist
In these days of increasing conflict between multiple factions, I offer a case of State vs Church in which one 'State' - the federal judiciary, rules against another State - Colorado.

Is the power of the State of Colorado used in order to preserve public health to be seen as an abuse of said power when it is used to place restrictions upon religious gatherings? The plaintiffs in the case claimed that secular public gatherings didn't face the same restrictions. This may be true. In response, Colorado has issued new restrictions on all public gatherings.
New Health Order Limits Personal Gatherings To 10 People From No More Than 2 Households In Most Counties

Two Colorado churches win lawsuit against state's Covid-19 mask and crowd limit requirements
As the US enters what experts say will be another Covid-19 surge, a federal judge ruled two Colorado churches don't have to limit how many worshippers come in and don't have to require them to wear face coverings.

Judge Daniel D. Domenico sided with the churches and found the state's restrictions violate the Constitution.

The judge said that while the state may have made the decisions in good faith, "the Constitution does not allow the State to tell a congregation how large it can be when comparable secular gatherings are not so limited, or to tell a congregation that its reason for wishing to remove facial coverings is less important than a restaurant's or spa's," according to court documents.

The state's orders, court documents said, "treat houses of worship different from comparable secular institutions."


 

BlueTex

Supporting Member
Monthly Subscriber
DP Veteran
Joined
Jan 15, 2019
Messages
12,711
Reaction score
6,226
Location
Texas
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Slightly Liberal
Trump judge! lol...
 

Somerville

DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 29, 2012
Messages
14,558
Reaction score
5,896
Location
On an island. Not that one!
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Socialist
NOW - to add to the discussion - A slightly different take on the matter from the state I reside in. Despite a recent uptick in the number of cases in the state, Maine is tied with Vermont for the lowest number of cases per capita. How is this related to the Colorado case where the churches argued their freedom of religion was being hampered by the state? Two of the largest outbreaks in Maine are tied to two church gatherings in rural towns. The first took place in August following a wedding, By the end of September, it had led to eight deaths and at least 177 cases of COVID-19. The more recent outbreak is tied to a church in Brooks, ME - population 1,078 - where we now have 49 cases tied to the church.

The town of Millinocket basically shut down and as a result has experienced ZERO cases


Scary headline but if you take the time to read the article - no paywall - you will find that the ministers interviewed have a far more compassionate view of those who don't attend church than some of those with the biggest platform in other states.
Maine’s 2nd church-related outbreak triggers fears of a shutdown on houses of worship

BELFAST, Maine — The congregation of the First Church in Belfast hasn’t met together indoors since the coronavirus pandemic began in March.

The Revs. Joel Krueger and Kate Winter had planned a short, in-person service in the coming weeks. Congregants would wear masks and keep a safe distance. But the COVID-19 outbreak that spread after an indoor fellowship gathering at Brooks Pentecostal Church earlier this month uprooted that plan.

The Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday reported that at least 49 cases of the virus had spread from the church outbreak. Three patients linked to the outbreak have been hospitalized.

And now religious leaders fear the state could enact another ban on in-person church services if coronavirus outbreaks from congregations aren’t contained.

“It’s painful, because there are people in our congregation who are longing to get back to worship. They really feel this loss. But it reignited the fears,” Winter said.

She said he’s sad for the Pentecostal Church in Brooks — but on the other hand, the congregation could have been more careful. Many who likely contracted the virus at the fellowship this month weren’t wearing masks or properly distancing, according to the Maine CDC.
Which is more important for the progress of the nation - spiritual health or physical health?
 

Chomsky

Social Democrat
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 28, 2015
Messages
50,815
Reaction score
38,610
Location
Third Coast
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Other
In these days of increasing conflict between multiple factions, I offer a case of State vs Church in which one 'State' - the federal judiciary, rules against another State - Colorado.

Is the power of the State of Colorado used in order to preserve public health to be seen as an abuse of said power when it is used to place restrictions upon religious gatherings? The plaintiffs in the case claimed that secular public gatherings didn't face the same restrictions. This may be true. In response, Colorado has issued new restrictions on all public gatherings.
New Health Order Limits Personal Gatherings To 10 People From No More Than 2 Households In Most Counties
That sounds like a fair ruling, to me. The Church is arguing that their congregation should not be llimited beyond that of other public gatherings. Which strikes me as a reasonable argument.
 

swing_voter

DP Veteran
Joined
Aug 4, 2019
Messages
9,040
Reaction score
5,599
Location
'Murica
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Independent
Would Jesus want you to hold church if it kills one or two of the older members?

I don't think so.
 

Somerville

DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 29, 2012
Messages
14,558
Reaction score
5,896
Location
On an island. Not that one!
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Socialist
That sounds like a fair ruling, to me. The Church is arguing that their congregation should not be llimited beyond that of other public gatherings. Which strikes me as a reasonable argument.
I've not been able to find the regulations that had been used by the two churches as the basis for their suit. Evidently in response to the ruling, the state of Colorado has put in place new regulations on public gatherings.

October 23, 2020

Personal gatherings are now limited to 10 people from no more than two households in all counties at all three "Safer at Home" levels.

The amendment to the health order primarily impacts the 29 counties under Level 1 "Safer at Home" restrictions — including Larimer, Arapahoe and Douglas counties — where gatherings had been allowed to be up to 25 people.

Personal gatherings in the 30 Colorado counties under Level 2 and Level 3 restrictions were already limited to 10 people.

Coronavirus cases are continuing to climb. State data shows social gatherings are a common exposure point among new cases, suggesting people are relaxing their precautions and interacting with more people from other households, according to a press release from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
 

Chomsky

Social Democrat
DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 28, 2015
Messages
50,815
Reaction score
38,610
Location
Third Coast
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Other
I've not been able to find the regulations that had been used by the two churches as the basis for their suit. Evidently in response to the ruling, the state of Colorado has put in place new regulations on public gatherings.
As they should, if they believe gatherings like those of the congregation need be regulated.
 

bongsaway

DP Veteran
Joined
Jan 16, 2019
Messages
14,887
Reaction score
6,508
Location
Flori-duh
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Progressive
In these days of increasing conflict between multiple factions, I offer a case of State vs Church in which one 'State' - the federal judiciary, rules against another State - Colorado.

Is the power of the State of Colorado used in order to preserve public health to be seen as an abuse of said power when it is used to place restrictions upon religious gatherings? The plaintiffs in the case claimed that secular public gatherings didn't face the same restrictions. This may be true. In response, Colorado has issued new restrictions on all public gatherings.
New Health Order Limits Personal Gatherings To 10 People From No More Than 2 Households In Most Counties
Nothing like dying for your religious beliefs.
 

Checkerboard Strangler

Reality Based Community
Supporting Member
DP Veteran
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
37,626
Reaction score
20,708
Location
Los Angeles
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
So great, they can now hold all the super-spreader events they want indoors.
And then when the families of the dead sue the church, they will appeal to Congress and the courts for immunity because of course, the pandemic is clearly an "Act of God", despite the fact that their own actions are the cause of the deaths.
 

Checkerboard Strangler

Reality Based Community
Supporting Member
DP Veteran
Joined
Aug 8, 2005
Messages
37,626
Reaction score
20,708
Location
Los Angeles
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
The state's orders, court documents said, "treat houses of worship different from comparable secular institutions."
That's because indoor services at a house of worship ARE different from comparable secular institutions.
Everything about an indoor service at a house of worship is different.

This is not a legal issue over people's rights, this virus does not care about the law or your rights.
This is a medical issue, a science issue.
Indoor worship services include exactly the kind of interpersonal interactions that are extremely well suited to spreading a virus.

All hail stupidity.
 

beancounter

DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 6, 2017
Messages
2,073
Reaction score
1,122
Location
At the Center of Eternity
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Moderate
A lot of churches in my area switched to virtual services. It seems like the sensible thing to do, and in no way shape or form tramples on their freedom of religion.

The only thing it does is limit a church's ability to pressure people into donating, but that's not a freedom of religion or speech issue...

Especially in the 21st century, when there are multiple ways that money can be sent electronically.
 

X Factor

Anti-Socialist
Dungeon Master
DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 1, 2010
Messages
55,854
Reaction score
27,941
Location
El Paso Strong
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Conservative
That's because indoor services at a house of worship ARE different from comparable secular institutions.
Everything about an indoor service at a house of worship is different.

This is not a legal issue over people's rights, this virus does not care about the law or your rights.
This is a medical issue, a science issue.
Indoor worship services include exactly the kind of interpersonal interactions that are extremely well suited to spreading a virus.

All hail stupidity.
If everyone is not subject to the same restrictions, it’s discrimination. Your shorts would be in a massive bunch if it was the other way around
 

X Factor

Anti-Socialist
Dungeon Master
DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 1, 2010
Messages
55,854
Reaction score
27,941
Location
El Paso Strong
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Conservative
A lot of churches in my area switched to virtual services. It seems like the sensible thing to do, and in no way shape or form tramples on their freedom of religion.

The only thing it does is limit a church's ability to pressure people into donating, but that's not a freedom of religion or speech issue...

Especially in the 21st century, when there are multiple ways that money can be sent electronically.
Just because you don’t think in person church service is important or valuable doesn’t mean you get to decide that for anyone else. If you think targeting of churches for rules that don’t apply to others isn’t infringement of freedom of religion, it’s clear Dems aren’t interested in protecting those rights.
 

Somerville

DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 29, 2012
Messages
14,558
Reaction score
5,896
Location
On an island. Not that one!
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Socialist
Just because you don’t think in person church service is important or valuable doesn’t mean you get to decide that for anyone else. If you think targeting of churches for rules that don’t apply to others isn’t infringement of freedom of religion, it’s clear Dems aren’t interested in protecting those rights.
Read the link in post #6
 

beancounter

DP Veteran
Joined
Sep 6, 2017
Messages
2,073
Reaction score
1,122
Location
At the Center of Eternity
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Moderate
Just because you don’t think in person church service is important or valuable doesn’t mean you get to decide that for anyone else. If you think targeting of churches for rules that don’t apply to others isn’t infringement of freedom of religion, it’s clear Dems aren’t interested in protecting those rights.
I would agree that a sense of community is diminished with virtual services, but the issue is freedom of religion, and the words of a sermon are not restricted by online services.
 

Glitch

DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 3, 2019
Messages
7,721
Reaction score
2,766
Location
Alaska (61.5°N, -149°W)
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
In these days of increasing conflict between multiple factions, I offer a case of State vs Church in which one 'State' - the federal judiciary, rules against another State - Colorado.

Is the power of the State of Colorado used in order to preserve public health to be seen as an abuse of said power when it is used to place restrictions upon religious gatherings? The plaintiffs in the case claimed that secular public gatherings didn't face the same restrictions. This may be true. In response, Colorado has issued new restrictions on all public gatherings.
New Health Order Limits Personal Gatherings To 10 People From No More Than 2 Households In Most Counties
As has been pointed out to you before, States may not violate the US Constitution. Even during declared emergencies. Which means that States cannot restrict or limit the free exercise of religious belief or the freedom of association.

Colorado can order what ever it likes, but they had better not try to enforce any order that deliberately violates the US Constitution unless they want to be sued and lose yet again.
 

Somerville

DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 29, 2012
Messages
14,558
Reaction score
5,896
Location
On an island. Not that one!
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Socialist
As has been pointed out to you before, States may not violate the US Constitution. Even during declared emergencies. Which means that States cannot restrict or limit the free exercise of religious belief or the freedom of association.

Colorado can order what ever it likes, but they had better not try to enforce any order that deliberately violates the US Constitution unless they want to be sued and lose yet again.
Preamble to the Constitution:
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Do you see that one phrase - promote the general Welfare ?
 

Drawdown

DP Veteran
Joined
Aug 8, 2019
Messages
11,528
Reaction score
3,027
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
There have been no church outbreaks in my area since they resumed in person worship. Nursing homes and people traveling out of the area and bringing it back and infecting those they live with and who come into their homes are the big spreaders. Early on it was travelers and attending out of town funerals. Most all of the clusters involve people living in close contact with one another, not random infections from churches or Walmarts.
 

Glitch

DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 3, 2019
Messages
7,721
Reaction score
2,766
Location
Alaska (61.5°N, -149°W)
Gender
Male
Political Leaning
Conservative
Preamble to the Constitution:
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Do you see that one phrase - promote the general Welfare ?
You know that the preamble is not binding, right? A preamble merely serves as a description of the document and contains no actual powers. Besides, the Supreme Court already laughed the government lawyers out of court when they attempting to use "General Welfare" as a power under Article I, Section 8, Clause 3 of the US Constitution in United States v. Butler, 297 U.S. 1, (1936).

If the novel view of the General Welfare Clause now advanced in support of the tax were accepted, that clause would not only enable Congress to supplant the States in the regulation of agriculture and of all other industries as well, but would furnish the means whereby all of the other provisions of the Constitution, sedulously framed to define and limit the power of the United States and preserve the powers of the States, could be broken down, the independence of the individual States obliterated, and the United States converted into a central government exercising uncontrolled police power throughout the Union superseding all local control over local concerns.
There is no such thing as a federal "General Welfare" power. The US Constitution includes numerous very specific federal powers for the purpose of promoting the general welfare, but there is no power that allows government to do whatever they please in the name of the general welfare. That would be incredibly stupid and completely defeat the purpose of the US Constitution.
 

ludin

DP Veteran
Joined
Dec 3, 2013
Messages
57,405
Reaction score
14,572
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Undisclosed
So great, they can now hold all the super-spreader events they want indoors.
And then when the families of the dead sue the church, they will appeal to Congress and the courts for immunity because of course, the pandemic is clearly an "Act of God", despite the fact that their own actions are the cause of the deaths.
cool so all of the dem gov. that held and allowed super spreaders can be sued? people of ny and ca should get on it right away.
you leftists are a riot.

3 months of super spreaders and you guys defended all of it.
 

Somerville

DP Veteran
Joined
Apr 29, 2012
Messages
14,558
Reaction score
5,896
Location
On an island. Not that one!
Gender
Undisclosed
Political Leaning
Socialist
You know that the preamble is not binding, right? A preamble merely serves as a description of the document and contains no actual powers. Besides, the Supreme Court already laughed the government lawyers out of court when they attempting to use "General Welfare" as a power under Article I, Section 8, Clause 3 of the US Constitution in United States v. Butler, 297 U.S. 1, (1936).

There is no such thing as a federal "General Welfare" power. The US Constitution includes numerous very specific federal powers for the purpose of promoting the general welfare, but there is no power that allows government to do whatever they please in the name of the general welfare. That would be incredibly stupid and completely defeat the purpose of the US Constitution.
You should perhaps have chosen a more recent decision from the Supreme Court - one like South Dakota v. Dole, 483 U.S. 203 (1987)

This case was related to a South Dakota law that allowed persons 19 years old to buy beer at a time when all other states had moved to the 21 years ruling. But the decision (7-2) was based on the general welfare phrase found in the preamble.
Incident to the spending power, Congress may attach conditions on the receipt of federal funds. However, exercise of the power is subject to certain restrictions, including that it must be in pursuit of "the general welfare." Section 158 is consistent with such restriction, since the means chosen by Congress to address a dangerous situation -- the interstate problem resulting from the incentive, created by differing state drinking ages, for young persons to combine drinking and driving -- were reasonably calculated to advance the general welfare. Section 158 also is consistent with the spending power restrictions that, if Congress desires to condition the States' receipt of federal funds, it must do so unambiguously, enabling the States to exercise their choice knowingly, cognizant of the consequences of their participation; and that conditions on federal grants must be related to a national concern (safe interstate travel here). Pp. 483 U. S. 206-209.
Are measures instituted in an effort to reduce the effects of a pandemic to be seen as "related to a national concern"?

Within a year of the Butler decision, the SCOTUS ruled in Steward Machine Co. v. Davis that the federal government could require certain acts in support of the general welfare.
The general principle is firmly established. “Congress has frequently employed the Spending Power to further broad policy objectives by conditioning receipt of federal moneys upon compliance by the recipient with federal statutory and administrative directives. This Court has repeatedly upheld against constitutional challenge the use of this technique to induce governments and private parties to cooperate voluntarily with federal policy.”
Fullilove v. Klutznick, 448 U.S. 448, 474 (1980) (Chief Justice Burger’s opinion for the Court cited five cases to document the assertion: California Bankers Ass’n v. Shultz, 416 U.S. 21 (1974); Lau v. Nichols, 414 U.S. 563 (1974); Oklahoma v. Civil Service Comm’n, 330 U.S. 127 (1947); Helvering v. Davis, 301 U.S. 619 (1937); and Steward Machine Co. v. Davis, 301 U.S. 548 (1937).
Quotes from law.justia.com
 

Lovebug

DP Veteran
Joined
Jul 19, 2011
Messages
20,817
Reaction score
8,695
Location
south
Gender
Female
Political Leaning
Other
5 Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. 6 “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. For it is written:

“‘He will command his angels concerning you,
and they will lift you up in their hands,
so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.’[a]”

7 Jesus answered him, “It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’


 
Top Bottom