This weekend crowds filled streets across our nation in celebration of Former Vice President Joe Biden’s media-declared victory. Images of thousands of people dancing in jubilation flooded social media and dominated news broadcasts.
Biden supporters cheerfully violated local and state mask ordinances and broke social distancing regulations, but unlike with other gatherings, they faced no consequences. Why is that?
Either the pandemic is over and someone forgot to tell the rest of us or only Biden supporters get a free pass? Either way, this weekend exposed two things: (1.) Criticism of conservative protests against draconian COVID-19 orders was blatantly hypocritical, and (2.) selective crackdowns targeting religious communities were willfully discriminatory.
Here’s the story
If you tuned into the news yesterday, you saw images of Americans dancing and celebrating in the streets after media outlets declared that Joe Biden crossed the 270-electorate threshold needed to win the presidency. (Nevermind the pesky facts that some races are still too close to call, there are pending legal challenges in several states over voting irregularities, a potential recount in one state, and that no state election results have been certified.)
In Washington, D.C., thousands crammed the streets near the White House:
People were popping champagne bottles, some without masks:
Perhaps they forgot that the mayor of D.C. has banned gatherings over 50 people.
New York City’s Time Square was filled with revelers despite the mayor’s ban on large gatherings and stringent enforcement:
In the Big Apple, the city has slapped penalties of up to $15,000 a day for violating mass gathering rules. Houses of worship are limited to 25-percent capacity or a max of 10 people.
Mayor Bill de Blasio took enforcement against the city’s Jewish community seriously:
Yet, he broke social distancing rules to paint the street in front of Trump Tower with a Black Lives Matters mural. He has permitted BLM protests to continue uninterrupted explaining,
This is a historic moment of change. We have to respect that but also say to people the kinds of gatherings we’re used to, the parades, the fairs — we just can’t have that while we’re focusing on health right now.
Freedom of assembly for some should mean freedom of assembly for all. Picking and choosing who is permitted to exercise their constitutional rights is discriminatory. The irony is that policymakers are granting preferential treatment to BLM which is purported to advance equality.
Meanwhile, they seem to be punishing faith communities by limiting their free exercise of worship and assembly. While most states granted some religious exemptions to social distancing regulations, some states such as California and New York maintained outright bans. Churches have challenged the bans and restrictions in court and so far the Court cases have yielded mixed outcomes.
COVID-19 is serious, but to left-leaning lawmakers, political power is critical. To them, it’s okay to gather to celebrate the election of your political ally or organize for votes, but it’s illegal to mourn lost loved ones together as your faith prescribes or to worship together. Covid-19 has exposed government hypocrisy at its worst.