A federal judge granted a restraining order against a Kentucky mayor who promised to record the license plates of Easter churchgoers, calling the order “unconstitutional.”
U.S. District Court Judge Justin Walker granted the temporary restraining order (TRO) preventing Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer from blocking Easter drive-in-services at On Fire Church, the non-profit public interest law firm First Liberty Institute announced in a Saturday press release.
According to First Liberty, the Louisville church had been hosting drive-in-church services for several weeks consistent with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) coronavirus guidelines.
The order prevents Louisville from “enforcing; attempting to enforce; threatening to enforce; or otherwise requiring compliance with any prohibition on drive-in church services at On Fire,” court documents show. The judge condemned Fischer’s order in a memorandum opinion that compared the order to a report from the satirical publication, “The Onion.” “That sentence is one that this Court never expected to see outside the pages of a dystopian novel, or perhaps the pages of The Onion,” Walker said. “But two days ago, citing the need for social distancing during the current pandemic, Louisville’s Mayor Greg Fischer ordered Christians not to attend Sunday services, even if they remained in their cars to worship –and even though it’s Easter.” “The Mayor’s decision is stunning,” the opinion concludes. “And it is,’beyond all reason,’ unconstitutional.” Democratic Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear had announced that the state would enforce stay-at-home measures by recording the license plates of any person attending Easter services. “This is a time and weekend, a whole week for multiple faiths, that is about faith. It’s about knowing we have faced as people – as Christians, as Jews, as members of many faiths – many difficult, dark times, and we have prevailed,” Beshear said Friday. “We know that […]