D.C. To Pay $220k Settlement In Church Lockdown Lawsuit | Eastern North Carolina Now | Government officials need to know that illegal restrictions on First Amendment rights are intolerable and costly

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
Publisher's Note: This post appears here courtesy of the The Daily Wire. The author of this post is Jon Brown.

    The District of Columbia and Democratic District Mayor Muriel Bowser agreed to pay $220,000 as part of a settlement with Capitol Hill Baptist Church (CHBC), the prominent evangelical church that sued them last fall.

    In addition to paying $220,000 — $210,000 of which will go to the CHBC's counsel and $10,000 to the legal nonprofit First Liberty Institute — the District also agreed never again to prohibit CHBC from gathering or "to impose restrictions on CHBC that more restrictive than the restrictions on comparable secular activities, per the Supreme Court," according to the settlement agreement and release approved Thursday.

    CHBC sued Bowser and her city government in September, alleging the District's strict lockdown orders were being unfairly applied to houses of worship. At the time, even outdoor church services were capped at 100 people, despite the thousands of protesters who demonstrated in the city during Black Lives Matter marches.

    Related: D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser's Petty, Hypocritical Tyranny Must Stop

    "All Capitol Hill Baptist Church ever asked is for equal treatment under the law so they could meet together safely as a church," said Hiram Sasser, who is executive general counsel for the First Liberty Institute. "The church is relieved and grateful that this ordeal is behind them. Government officials need to know that illegal restrictions on First Amendment rights are intolerable and costly."

    As The Daily Wire first reported of the case:

  • In a lawsuit filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court, attorneys representing Capitol Hill Baptist Church (CHBC) claimed that the District government is showing preferential treatment in how it enforces the repeatedly extended lockdown orders.
  • Claiming a violation of the First and Fifth Amendments, as well as the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, the suit pointed out that while they are forbidden from congregating even outdoors in excess of 100 people, Bowser herself has expressed public support for the recent mass protests in the District where tens of thousands gathered.
  • A portion of the lawsuit documented the repeated times over the summer when mass protests violated the city's lockdown orders, but for which there were no consequences. Referring to the June 6 protest near the White House, the suit notes, "Mayor Bowser attended the mass protest and said to the thousands in attendance, 'It's so wonderful to see everyone peacefully protesting, wearing their masks.'"

    Following support from the Department of Justice and 34 Republican senators, Bowser eventually backed off her clampdown on outdoor services. "It is for the church, not the District or this court, to define for itself the meaning of 'not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together,'" ruled Trump-appointed Judge Trevor McFadden, referencing a verse in the New Testament that commands Christians to gather together for worship.

    The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington, D.C. also filed a lawsuit against Bowser and the District in the lead-up to Christmas, when she attempted to restrict church attendance to 50 people regardless of building size.
Go Back

HbAD0

Latest Op-Ed & Politics

While camping in the woods, local woman Sandra Peppertree reportedly shared with a group of close friends that she "just loves s'mores" and "can't get enough of them" leading to speculation that she has never tasted good food in her life.
A new law passed by North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un’s puppet parliament will allow for the leader to fire a preemptive nuclear attack if the country believes such an action would protect it from a threat.
The following is a letter I just wrote and sent to my US Senators (North Carolina), emphasizing that they need to vote AGAINST H.R. 8404 – the “Respect for Marriage Act,” sponsored by Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY).
The Supreme Court ruled on Friday to temporarily block a New York judge’s order to force Yeshiva University to recognize a club for LGBTQ students until the college’s religious freedom case is completed.
Irregularities make results unreliable says Constitutional Court
Upon hearing that Florida Governor Ron DeSantis is sending another group of migrants to his mansion in Delaware, President Joe Biden authorized a mobilization of 20,000 National Guard troops to defend his home from the invaders.
Numerous Departments of Public Health across the United States are opting to replace “mother” and “father” for “birth parent” and “non-birth parent,” respectively.

HbAD1

Netflix could face another massive loss by the end of the year after recently facing its largest drop in subscribers in the company’s history.
President Joe Biden sat down for an interview last week with Scott Pelley of 60 Minutes, prompting an all-nighter by the show's editor who was forced to sift through hours of the president's racial epithets to produce a 25-minute segment for the long-running CBS show.
Total household wealth in the United States fell $6.1 trillion dollars in the second quarter of 2022, according to data released on Friday by the Federal Reserve.
Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) unleashed a tirade aimed at President Joe Biden and Democrats on Tuesday, accusing them of playing the race card at the southern border because it was the only card they had.
The Holy Bible represents God's complete revelation to mankind. Every word of it is inspired by God and useful for the teaching, correcting, and equipping of the saints.
Supreme Court Justice Neil Gorsuch said Thursday he hopes the report on the leaked draft opinion of the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization decision comes soon.
RALEIGH: In advance of Hurricane Ian’s remnants moving through the state, Governor Roy Cooper declared a State of Emergency today to activate the state’s emergency operations plan, waive transportation rules to help the transport of fuel and critical supplies
The new British monarch bears the name of a predecessor who was executed and another who was exiled.

HbAD2

 
Back to Top