During the height of the COVID pandemic, people were forced to find new and creative ways to combat mask mandates and social distancing across the globe. In Moscow, Gabriel Rench and Sean and Rachel Bohnet were arrested for attending an outdoor, maskless psalm ring. Organized by church leaders, the trio, along with other parishioners, stood and sang psalms. They stood in yellow circles six feet apart to comply with distancing.
As much as you might be surprised by this fact, this was in Moscow, Idaho. Now Moscow, Russia.
Christ Church of Moscow, ID, had conducted multiple protests against such pointless and draconian laws. The parishioners wanted to show the city how wrong they were to restrict people like this. More to the point, they wanted to exercise their rights to assemble and worship as granted by the Constitution.
Video evidence shows them maintaining their distance and integrity as they were detained. Faced with charges of violating the city’s health ordinance, they were ultimately held for a few hours and released. With both the ID State Constitution and the US Constitution protecting them, they already had exemptions to the ordinance despite the beliefs and orders of local officials.
District Judge Morrison C. England Jr. ruled, “Plaintiffs should never have been arrested in the first place, and the constitutionality of what the City thought its [sic] Code said is irrelevant.” Despite his ruling dismissing the charges, the trio was more than happy to file suit in March 2021, just two months after mandates were finally lifted.
Rench told Fox News Digital, “I’m in a conservative state, but I live in a liberal town, and the liberals had no problem arresting me for practicing my religious rights and my Constitutional rights. But my [Republican] governor also didn’t defend me either. If you look at what’s going on in Canada, I think America’s 10 years, at most 20 years, behind Canada if we don’t make significant changes.”
As friendly as our maple syrup-chugging neighbors to the north are, we don’t want to become like them. Their loss of liberty and freedom of choice is not the direction to take this country. Thankfully lawsuits like this remind us of where the liberals are trying to take all of us, one town at a time.