Though the Supreme Court of the United States has handed down some disappointing decisions over the last several weeks, they’ve gotten one thing right: Upholding religious liberty in the locked-down state of California.
The Supreme Court ruled on Friday that churches can begin meeting indoors as a case suing the state over its draconian rules regulating worship services works its way through the state’s 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Fox News reported:
The churches will be allowed to hold indoor services as they await a decision on their appeal in the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which is hearing their case but had denied a motion to suspend the ban during it.
The churches sued Santa Clara County earlier this month after the county continued to ban indoor services despite an earlier Supreme Court ruling that Gov. Gavin Newsom’s complete ban violated the First Amendment, according to the Bay Area’s Mercury News.
The county argued that its ban was allowed because it did not single out religious gatherings.
But the Supreme Court’s order will prevent the county from enforcing the ban until the 9th Circuit case concludes.
This is another major win for religious liberty in a state that seems hell-bent on preventing churches from returning to full-capacity worship services.
The high court ruled earlier in 2021 that churches can return to 25 percent capacity indoor services after a long, drawn-out legal battle, but Santa Clara County continued to refuse to allow churches within the county to exercise their right to gather, triggering another lawsuit.
Once again, the court has ruled on the side of religious liberty — though the liberal contingent of the court isn’t happy about it.
“Justices of this court are not scientists,” liberal Justice Elaina Kagan wrote in dissent. “Nor do we know much about public health policy. Yet today the court displaces the judgments of experts about how to respond to a raging pandemic. The court orders California to weaken its restrictions on public gatherings by making a special exception for worship services.”
California continues to experience cratering rates of COVID-19 infections and deaths, yet Democrat Governor Gavin Newsom refuses to give up his iron grip on the state’s nearly 40 million residents.