Right now, across the United States, many government officials are being unreasonable.
Not all of them, of course. But far too many. We understand government officials are trying to make things work, and they are doing their level best to respond under stressful and difficult conditions. And we’re praying for all of our nation’s leaders.
But the actions of some government officials over the past several weeks—treating churches worse than other groups—is simply indefensible. It’s also unconstitutional, and that’s why ADF is standing alongside these churches.
As states began to shut down in response to the coronavirus, some government officials targeted churches with unfair restrictions.
Church members were fined as they sat in their cars during drive-in services, so we filed a lawsuit to protect their rights. We also assisted when church services were not allowed to meet, even though bars, businesses, and other secular organizations could meet in groups larger than 10.
These restrictions were problematic because they were not applied equally to similarly situated secular groups. Because government officials had treated these churches worse than businesses and other organizations, we had to step in.
And with God’s blessing, we achieved victories for every church we represented in that first phase of government overreach.
But as cities and states start to lift stay-at-home orders, some government officials continue to treat churches as second-class.
This is what’s happening in some states as they reopen:
Like the first wave, this new wave of discrimination against churches is unconstitutional. We are monitoring these situations, and we are taking legal action to protect the rights of churches.
The coronavirus, and our response to it, has complexities that are yet unknown. But that doesn’t mean government officials should get a free pass when they treat churches worse than secular businesses and organizations. Religious discrimination is always unconstitutional, pandemic or not.
If you are a church leader who is experiencing this kind of unreasonable treatment, please do not hesitate to contact us. The ADF Church Alliance team would be happy to advise you relating to your situation.