The Charlotte News
Friday, April 3, 1953
Site Ed. Note: The front page reports, via Forrest Edwards, that 175 Communist Chinese troops had struck this date allied lines in central Korea, northeast of Chorwon, for the second time in the previous 24 hours, and troops of the U.S. 3rd Division had routed the enemy in two hours of hand-to-hand combat. The Chinese had fired more than 3,300 artillery shells before and during the attack, but at no time had the Americans lost control of the hill. In the same general area, a full Chinese battalion had attacked positions of the South Korean Capitol Division prior to dawn but were repulsed in a 40-minute battle. In eastern Korea, allied troops repulsed three small probing attacks, and other troops killed or wounded 29 enemy troops in a patrol clash in the west.
Low clouds grounded allied warplanes, but the previous night, B-26 bombers had destroyed 26 enemy trucks and shot up trains in strikes against North Korean communication lines.
The U.S. Eighth Army reported that 12,553 enemy troops had been killed, wounded or captured by the allies during March, the highest monthly total since the previous November, when 14,540 casualties had been reported. Of the total, 6,709 had been killed, 5,710 wounded and 53 captured, the highest prisoner of war count in several months. The total casualties represented an increase of more than 5,000 over the February total. Most of the enemy troops had been killed or wounded in the fighting on "Old Baldy Hill" and at the Vegas outpost on the western front.
In New York, some 5,000 relatives and girlfriends of soldiers returning from Korea greeted their loved ones, 1,923 veterans of Korea and 315 from other Far East stations. New York and New Jersey troops headed for a City Hall reception and a Broadway parade, while troops from other states boarded ferries for New Jersey to go to Camp Kilmer for furlough clearance. Some of the men were seeing their infant children for the first time. Many Broadway entertainers put on a show aboard ship until the early morning hours, but some of the troops did not like the fact that the ship had not docked immediately, as the delay might prevent some of them from reaching home in time for Easter on Sunday. It was the first ship from Korea to dock in New York, as all others had gone to West Coast ports, the exception being made because the ship was due to be overhauled on the East Coast.
In Berlin, the East German Communists chose Good Friday to increase their harassment of the church, refusing to permit the Evangelical Lutheran Synod to hold a planned annual meeting in Weimar between April 16 and 21, providing no reason for the refusal; seized a Protestant seminary and sent the students home while arresting the Deacon who was the senior faculty member, also not providing any reason; and banned Easter services in the "death zone" between East and West Germany by issuing a police order forbidding any assemblage of more than three persons. The Lutheran Synod chose instead to hold their meeting in West Berlin for the church leaders of three Soviet zonal states and Bavaria, West Germany.
Moscow announced the release of 14 French civilians interned by the Communists in Korea, having been captured in Seoul at the outbreak of the war in mid-1950, including some members of the French Consulate staff in Seoul. The matter was viewed in Paris as another conciliatory gesture by the Communists.
In Korea, the U.N. Command rushed plans for the possible quick return of sick and wounded allied prisoners of war, about whom negotiators would meet the following Monday to arrange the details of the transfer. If all were to go well with that, armistice might then be discussed further.
In Moscow, a group of American newspaper and radio executives had dinner the previous night with Soviet officials, and drank toasts to both the President and Premier Georgi Malenkov, and to improved relations between the two nations.
The President, at his press conference the previous day, said that the U.S. should take at face value every offer made by the Communists until it was proved unworthy. He said that if the Communists went through with the exchange of the sick and wounded prisoners, and if it promoted negotiations toward a truce, as the Communists had suggested, then it would be a clear indication that deeds rather than words characterized their new approach to policy. He also said that he did not believe that Senator McCarthy had undermined Government policy with his deal with Greek shipowners, a unilaterally negotiated agreement with Greek owners of 242 ships to desist in trade in and between Communist ports, but added that the right to negotiate agreements in that area rested completely with the President.
Mutual Security Agency director Harold Stassen said this date that he completely disagreed with the President's position on the efforts by Senator McCarthy to curb free world trade with Communist nations. He told reporters after a Cabinet meeting that he agreed with the President that it would have been better for Mr. Stassen to have used the word "infringed", during his testimony the prior Monday to Senator McCarthy's Government Operations subcommittee, instead of saying that Senator McCarthy had "undermined" Government policy with the deal with Greek shipowners.
Senator McCarthy had conferred with Secretary of State Dulles on Wednesday and they later issued a joint statement saying that the Senator had agreed that formal negotiations were the function of the President and the State Department, but both also agreed that the ship deal was in the national interest.
Government finance specialists said this date that the country appeared headed for a deficit of nearly 6.5 billion dollars by the end of the fiscal year, about a half-billion dollars more than predicted by President Truman in his final budget message to Congress in January.
In Los Angeles, a Philadelphia surgeon told the American Surgical Association the previous day that lung cancer victims survived in 22 percent of the cases where one lung and sometimes parts of both lungs were removed. He said that persons living five years after the operation were considered to be survivors.
Near Erwin, N.C., two men and a four-year old girl had been burned to death in a light plane crash, and one man survived, though critically burned. One of the dead was the brother of a State Representative, Carson Gregory, both of whom operated a taxi business in Erwin.
In Asheville, Charles Britt, chairman of the State Board of Elections resigned this date and immediately announced his candidacy for a seat on the Asheville City Council.
In Raleigh, proposals to amend the State Constitution to allow creditors to attach up to ten percent of the earnings of debtors had died in the Senate Judiciary Committee this date, and the House Health Committee killed a bill to regulate the marketing of eggs, while approving a Senate-passed measure to stiffen the punishment for dope peddlers. A bill to repeal the secrecy law which the Assembly had passed the previous week, amending prior legislation which had required public hearings for all budgetary matters, was introduced in the State House this date and referred to the House Appropriations Committee. A public hearing would be called regarding the measure.
Tom Fesperman of The News
tells of a couple of Mecklenburg County Commissioners having painted
the newspaper's courthouse press room light blue, so that reporter
Ann Sawyer of the newspaper could write about them in lovelier
surroundings. One of the commissioners had donated the paint and
another commissioner had done the painting. Ms. Sawyer had been
writing reports regarding the need for repairs at the Courthouse, and
the Commissioners discussed ways of cleaning it up and painting it.
Ms. Sawyer interjected to the discussion that she wanted her cubicle
painted baby blue
In Detroit, a Recorder's Court judge reached a compromise with a Great Lakes seaman regarding the latter's charged public drunkenness, the judge asking him what he wanted, and he replied 10 days in the county jail, to which the judge said that he would give him 20, the seaman then bargaining for 15, to which the judge agreed. The seaman told him tearfully that he was a "good Joe", though his first name was actually John.
On the editorial page, "The Perils of 'Peace'" suggests that the olive branch offered to the West by the Soviets had grown into "a tree of many limbs", as the Soviet policy toward the West was softening daily, with peace tenders for Korea, a relaxing of restrictions between the Eastern and Western zones of Germany to access Berlin, and at the U.N. with the agreement by Russia to accept Dag Hammerskjold as the new Secretary-General. It summarizes those various efforts and finds that clearly the word had gone forth from the Kremlin to conduct a major peace offensive, unprecedented thus far in the cold war.
It indicates the belief that the moves were designed to lull the West into disunity and disarmament, at which point, if successful, the Communists could then swiftly reverse themselves and proceed with their plan of world conquest, with reasonable assurance that they could not be opposed effectively. It indicates that the stock market had declined sharply at the time the latest peace feelers had been announced, anticipating a drop in defense spending, and that sharp reduction in defense spending would trigger an even more severe drop. A majority of Congress would be opposed to the type of efforts undertaken by President Roosevelt to prop up the sagging economy when he first came to office in 1933, and the Communists might be anticipating that a peace offensive would produce such a drastic defense cutback by the economy-minded Congress, precipitating another depression and the breakdown of the capitalistic system.
It expresses the preference to be more optimistic about the peace offensive, but finds that past experience with the Communists and their historic policies did not allow for such optimism. It recognizes, however, that negotiations with the Russians would need to take place to effect compromise if possible, as every opportunity to establish East-West understanding had to be utilized.
"The Race Is Not Always to the Swift" indicates that April 16 was the deadline for filing for the City Council race and thus far, only ten candidates had announced for the seven seats. It wonders what had happened to the intense interest in public affairs which had manifested itself during the record-breaking turnout of voters the prior November, wonders whether managing local affairs appeared less important than national affairs. It hopes that more candidates would offer themselves for the positions.
"Good Work" praises the State Senate Roads Committee for killing the previous day a House-passed bill to permit the renewal of driver's licenses by mail, which it believes would have materially weakened highway safety in the state by opening the door to perjury and deceit.
"Mr. Jonas Is Doing All Right" finds that the first bill introduced by Congressman Charles Jonas of the district embracing Charlotte showed straight thinking. It sought to combine the fleets of Government-owned automobiles into car pools, in an effort to effect savings. The piece agrees and indicates, after his first speech had dealt with the history of the Office of Price Stabilization published by that Office, finding it a waste of money, that he was doing all right thus far.
A piece from the Baltimore Evening Sun, titled "Disconcerting?" indicates that the British Academy had recently published its "Proceedings" for the years 1949 and 1950, consisting of papers and lectures by scholars in humanistic studies, a brief review and one journal closing with a sentence which the piece finds teasing but never satisfying the curiosity of the "little lettered", quoting that sentence, regarding the "usurpation by Gyges of the throne of Lydia" as one of the most disconcerting discoveries of the century.
It wonders why anyone would be disconcerted by the fact in the atomic age, as it had occurred in the Seventh Century B.C. While Gyges had been a tyrant, the present time had seen Hitler, Stalin, and Malenkov and so should not be dismayed by another tyrant existing so long ago. It suggests that the humanists would need to come up with something more disconcerting than revelations regarding a drama about the Mermnadae.
Business Week, in an editorial, indicates that contrary to expectations, the change of administrations had not brought an end to Congressional inquiries regarding Communist infiltration of the Government, instead producing an intensification of the scope of the probes, causing confusion in some quarters and alarm in others. Congress had a long-established right to conduct investigations, and Secretary of State Dulles had made clear that he respected that right, acknowledging the rights of Senator McCarthy and Representative Harold Velde, chairman of HUAC, to do so.
But the right of Congress to investigate, designed as a check on executive power, was not meant to allow for dictation of policy or running of the executive branch. With regard to security, the new Administration needed to prove to Congress and the nation that it could assume full responsibility, as the Truman Administration, even after evidence of subversive activity had been disclosed, had given Congress valid cause to commence inquiries.
But the real cause for anxiety was not that witnesses were being singled out in public but that they were subjected to treatment which smacked of an evil inquisition, being indiscriminately harassed merely because they held unorthodox or unpopular views, an alarming trend. It agrees that there was no room for a Communist in the government or universities, but that there was a growing, dangerous trend toward assumption that all witnesses were guilty until proven innocent, constituting a threat to fundamental belief in freedom of thought, essential to the progress of free enterprise, and ultimately only benefiting Communism.
It posits that the efficiency of the new Administration in conducting its security program would serve to reduce the threat to individual liberties, but could not, alone, prevent undue hardship caused by intolerant treatment from Congress during its investigations, and suggests that there should be a curb on the power to investigate in that vein, that Congress should resist the temptation to make dissent tantamount to disloyalty. America, it reminds, was founded by dissenters and was maintained as great by citizens not satisfied with the status quo.
Community Health tells of North Carolina having led the nation during the previous five years in the number of blind people rehabilitated for effective living, accomplished through restoration of sight by means of a widespread medical program and through training so that the handicapped could earn a living or take their places at home as useful members of their families. Persons from all over the world had come to the Rehabilitation Center at Butner to study the program. The State Commission for the Blind provided organization and direction to the citizens contributing to the North Carolina Association for the Blind and from the more than 300 Lions Clubs in the state.
Students at the Center learned everything from good grooming and good housekeeping to a variety of occupations, including the management of refreshment and notions stands which the Commission placed in several cities. There were equal facilities for both races, with the constant goal being independence as contributing members of society, representing not only a savings to North Carolina taxpayers but the satisfaction of the deepest need of all mature citizens.
Drew Pearson indicates that the White House was discussing internally whether steps should be taken to crack down on the "fast-dancing, quick-jabbing" Senator Joseph McCarthy, referred to at the White House as "Jumping Joe". One adviser, propaganda chief C. D. Jackson, had stated recently that they had not anticipated the Senator to be a problem, at least not so quickly at the outset of the Administration. Initially, the President had ducked any effort to tangle with the Senator, declining to say anything at his press conference regarding the Senator's attack on the Voice of America, under the State Department's responsibility, despite Assistant Secretary of State Carl McCardle, in charge of the Voice, having phoned the White House to ask that the President make such a statement. The President, when asked about the matter at his press conference, had indirectly suggested support for the Senator by saying that it was the right of Congress to investigate such matters.
But following the Senator's efforts to defeat the confirmation of new Ambassador to Russia Charles Bohlen, the President was angry and decided that the advice he had received from Vice-President Nixon and initially by Senator Taft, to play it cozy with Senator McCarthy, had been wrong. It was the same advice given to General Eisenhower during the presidential campaign just prior to his speech in Wisconsin, despite Governor Dewey having urged that the General avoid the Senator during the trip, convinced otherwise by then-RNC chairman Arthur Summerfield and Senators Homer Ferguson of Michigan and Bourke Hickenlooper of Iowa. Senator McCarthy had even persuaded the General to remove from his speech two paragraphs which had praised General Marshall, whom the Senator had attacked as essentially a traitor for his policy as Secretary of State toward China, following his having spent a year in China as President Truman's envoy prior to being named Secretary of State at the beginning of 1947. When the President got mad, Mr. Pearson observes, he usually stayed mad, but Presidents who had spent their lives apart from the arena of politics usually shied away from political battles with Senators, as had been the case with President Herbert Hoover, who, like General Eisenhower, had spent much of his time outside the U.S. before becoming President in 1929.
Some advisers at the White House believed that the Justice Department ought study the report made on Senator McCarthy by the Senate Elections Committee regarding some of his strange financial operations and let the chips fall where they might, but more conservative leaders in Congress were opposed to that approach.
Congressman Brooks Hays of Arkansas had shown the President a "short-snorter" which he had signed as General some years earlier and told him how he had displayed the signature to his young son, who had only become excited by the signature of Bing Crosby.
The President had said that his meeting with Walter Reuther, president of the CIO, and other CIO leaders, had impressed him with their youth and mental alertness and that he had enjoyed the "fast play of wits among them". He said that Mr. Reuther had urged genuine collective bargaining with plenty of freedom between labor and industry, and the President had said that if they abided by that prescription, he would be in their corner.
Judge John J. Parker, Chief Judge of the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, in the second of three installments of testimony given to the Senate Judiciary Committee relative to the proposed amendment to the Constitution to alter the treaty-making power of the President with the advice and consent of two-thirds of the Senators present, to provide for the additional requirement of simple majorities of both houses and also bring within the ambit of the required ratification executive agreements entered by the President, addresses the proposed amendments themselves, having already explained his view that there was no danger of loss of rights by the people under the extant provisions.
With the advancements in transportation and communications, it was imperative for collective safety to effect cooperation among the nations, and the U.S. had to take the lead in that regard as Europe had nearly been wiped out during World War II, the free countries therein looking to the U.S. to lead and assist in their attempt to re-establish their civilization. The other world leader to whom nations might look for help was Russia. To preserve human freedom, the U.S. had to form an effective alliance of the free nations and it could not do so if the government were shackled in handling foreign affairs through amendments to the Constitution which would render more difficult the making of treaties and would hamper the executive in dealing with allies.
The proposed amendments would require every treaty to go through a two-step legislative process before being ratified, approval by two-thirds of the Senate and then implementation via legislation passed by both houses of Congress. He sees, however, no need for such an added requirement of majority approval by both houses, as the country had been getting along safely for more than a century and a half under the existing system.
Marquis Childs tells of the slight hope in Washington being attached to the Saturday radio broadcast of Chinese Communist Premier Chou En-lai, that peace might actually result in Korea. Secretary of Defense Charles E. Wilson had reacted to the news by saying that he did not want it to be a basis for going back to the truce negotiations of Panmunjom, having been suspended the prior fall when the allies walked out in frustration over the prolonged negotiations regarding repatriation of prisoners of war. General Mark Clark, U.N. supreme commander in Korea, had exchanged a series of teletypes with the Pentagon, producing a somewhat more optimistic outlook, as he expressed a cautious confidence that the Communists might actually desire peace badly enough this time to agree to some formula which would include the U.N. stance that no prisoner would be repatriated against his will.
Chou's statement had been vague and suspicion had been aroused in the West by his suggestion that prisoners who did not want to return would be turned over to an unspecified neutral country for further consideration. But its similarity to the Indian resolution, which had been overwhelmingly approved at the U.N. the previous December but rejected by the Communist-bloc nations, left room for optimism.
It was determined at U.N. Command headquarters in Tokyo that the Panmunjom truce talks would resume, and that in all likelihood, the Communist negotiators would initially suggest either Poland or Czechoslovakia as the neutral country, which, if done, would be perceived as the familiar stalling tactic and immediately rejected. It was assumed that at that point, the Communists would understand that their old ploys would no longer work and that they would then eventually accept a truly neutral nation, such as Sweden or Switzerland, the latter more likely as it was not a member of the U.N.
The belief was increasing that the Chinese Communist proposal was part of a general move to ease tensions between East and West, which, in addition to other incalculable results, would cause the already existing drive for economy in Congress to increase substantially, with the possible result of crippling U.S. defensive strength.
We feel compelled to note, as we head into Easter Sunday, 2020, the utter absurdity of a disgraceful Federal District Court decision out of Louisville, just issued by a Federal Judge who was confirmed in the Senate last fall by the sparest of margins, 50 votes, after being rated "unqualified" by the ABA for his lack of experience, proving out that rating with this decision which compromises public health and safety of thousands of people in the Louisville area and others with whom they might come in contact in the coming weeks. As has been said many times since the start of the coronavirus pandemic, it respects no boundaries, whether at a "religious" service held in a parking lot or other activity. This piece of worthless verbiage has to be the dumbest judicial opinion we have ever read, practically devoid of law, more packed with Biblical citations designed to appeal to the whacko "religious" right than any legal rationale.
Before reading it in the proper context of the law concerning the First Amendment free exercise clause, providing for separation of church and state and preventing government interference with the free exercise of religious beliefs, one should read thoroughly a Supreme Court opinion delivered in 1990 by Justice Antonin Scalia, a 6 to 3 decision, Employment Division v. Smith, in which the majority held that the State's rational interest in regulating and prohibiting the use of peyote was sufficient to overcome a claim of two individuals that they were fired from their jobs and deserved unemployment benefits for having insisted on smoking peyote contrary to job regulations as drug counselors, pursuant to their claim of it being a religious practice. The Court distinguished religious beliefs, protected by the First Amendment, from religious practices, not always protected when they conflict with proper exercise of government functions, those regulating health, morals, safety and welfare, the police powers, or other legitimate government functions which operate to curtail, under certain limited circumstances, all First Amendment rights. The majority refused to apply the strict scrutiny standard, ordinarily applicable in the context of fundamental Constitutional rights, those which are expressly stated, whereby the government entity must show a "compelling state interest" to justify the intrusion on rights, rather allowing the less stringent "rational basis" test, and determined that the state had a rational interest in prohibiting use of peyote, and was not engaged in using the law to discriminate against a particular religious practice but rather performing only its normal police powers of protecting public health and safety.
Under either test, it is clear to anyone who is not a purblind idiot, blinded by politics intertwined with supposed "religious" beliefs, turned backwards on themselves to the point of justification of plain evil, that during a worldwide pandemic caused by interpersonal contact with those infected with the coronavirus and, in many cases, unaware of that infection, being asymptomatic, it is either rational or serving a compelling state interest to limit interpersonal contact with such minimal government intrusions as shelter-in-place orders, with due exceptions made for properly social-distanced shopping for food and other necessities, or other excepted practices necessary for basic sustenance or for employment of persons engaged in certain service industries crucial to maintenance of the society generally, food stores, pharmacies, etc.
Religious beliefs were not impacted in the least by the order of the Mayor of Louisville, preventing in-person worship at churches, including so-called "drive-in services", for the limited duration of the pandemic. Obviously, the Mayor would have infringed the right of free exercise had he, for instance, imposed an order preventing all religious services, whether in-person or broadcast on television, radio or via the internet. The order only served the broad public interest of health and safety of the general population, while not in the least infringing the rights of any person to worship at Easter, only requiring worship at home and via media.
To the contrary, the "On Fire Christian Center" of Louisville obviously wants to brandish religion as a sword against the ploughshares of others. These nuts do not seem to understand, any more than the unqualified Federal Judge, that it is not just a personal decision whether one wants to stay at home and not potentially infect others, it is the rights and safety of everyone which are at stake, as it takes only one person with the virus to infect others in close proximity, just by breathing, not necessarily coughing, hacking, sneezing, or spitting. Any one of us could be a carrier and not realize it.
Anyone who is truly a Christian should have no issue with staying at home on this Easter Sunday and worshipping privately or via media, and then quietly engaging in reading this afternoon, really reading about and understanding, this virus and its deadly consequences, especially for those over about 60 and those with underlying health conditions, those accounting for about 90 percent of the more than 21,000 U.S. deaths so far, half of those in just the past week. That does not mean, however, that, if you are 59 or below or do not suffer from heart conditions, diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, or other complicating health conditions, you are necessarily immune from having the disease or transmitting it to others, whether loved ones in those high-risk categories or strangers. Your own hide may also be at risk, even if you are 20 and in perfect health. The virus does not respect boundaries, either geographic, demographic or interpersonal, when people are massed together. And the more people who congregate together, obviously, the more difficult it is, especially among worshippers accustomed to interpersonal contact, to practice consistently social distancing. It is hard enough, it appears, for some people to do so just in routine grocery shopping.
If the Church of Cyanide insisted on holding services wherein each parishioner would take a punch laced with the poison, obviously the state would be well within its power to arrest any such "minister" and to prevent such services from taking place, just as it would if the Church of L.S.D. insisted on holding similar dispensary services. No less is at stake at present, where close physical contact can result in infection, and then transmitting that infection far and wide to others, strangers or loved ones, having no connection with the church or other social gathering. One infection can multiply exponentially among a given population many times within days, as has been demonstrated visibly in this country during the past month, to anyone who has been paying even slight attention to the increasing numbers of those hospitalized and who have subsequently died from the virus, not including the infected not among the officially confirmed cases. Again, we remind that as late as March 20, a bit more than three weeks ago, the confirmed deaths in the U.S. from the coronavirus stood at between 170 and 250.Moreover, if exceptions are carved for churches, then others given to other pursuits, parties and the like, will feel the license to hold their social gatherings without regard to government orders to the contrary, indeed, will claim, with some probity under the dummy's rationale, that such gatherings are necessary to their well-being and good social feelings and are thus the equivalent of religious services, will seek exception Constitutionally under the right of assembly. The country has already topped Italy for the most deaths from the virus. Are these corrupt churches seeking anew fulfillment of some long-ago fulfilled prophecy of Armageddon at Megiddo?
Stay at home today on Easter Sunday, and if you have gone to a church service in person in the last month, get down on your knees and pray that you have not infected your brothers and sisters and that they did not infect you, for it may be the case.
No one is trying to deprive anyone of their religious beliefs or, under normal circumstances, their religious practices, which do not otherwise compromise the health and safety of others. That is all the Mayor of Louisville honorably sought to do. More power to him for that brave, politically unpopular decision, and to the Governor of Kentucky who has promised to issue orders of quarantine to anyone foolish enough to attend in-person religious services in derogation of the rights of all to be safe and healthy. No one has the right to take chances with the lives and health of others. You who think so are anointing yourselves as your individual demigods in your godless churches, and should be ashamed of yourselves if any shame you have left.
Here is the crazy, crackhead decision of the "unqualified" Judge, who, to us, appears as a Herod or Pilate on this Easter Sunday, insofar as all of us who are not members of the "On Fire Christian Center", and candidly, would not wish to be. For those parishioners, not unlike the name of their church implies, may be bound for hell, for being nothing less than tantamount to murderers of others, not necessarily themselves, should they go through with their threat to society to hold services involving close interpersonal contact, in reckless disregard of facts which are actually known or should be known to any reasonably informed adult. (We do not know whether to laugh or cry at the naivete displayed by the crackhead in suggesting that the services in question do not pose any danger for being drive-in services. Are the cars to be parked at least six feet apart and no one, including restless children, allowed to set foot out of those cars, even to use the rest room? Are the windows to be kept closed throughout the "services", in which case how is the "sermon" to be heard, through sign language? The "On Fire" people, according to the piously hypocritical opinion, claim that windows will only be halfway down and cars parked six feet apart—while remaining static for over an hour presumably, the duration of most church services, including the time to get settled and leave the area, giving ample time for breath to waft from one car to another, to another, to another, potentially carrying the virus to all present in such a compact area, and then to the public at large afterward, creating untold consequences both to the State, its health care providers and facilities and those of other states, plus the potential of grief for lost loved ones, all to satisfy the greedy, self-centered desires of certain "churches", motivated by politics, not religion, to hold some form of in-person "services", the public at large be damned. Other drive-through facilities, such as at food stores, afford only momentary contact with the vehicle window down, enough time to receive the groceries and pay, involving, presumably, one customer at a time, with employees dispensing the goods presumably protected by face masks and rubber gloves. Moreover, how would any such strictures as proposed by "On Fire" be enforced, by armed guards? Anyone so irresponsible to hold and attend such services presently, when little is yet known about the behavior, biologically, of the virus in question beyond its bad consequences to health and life, are not likely to adhere to any such precepts, adopted inevitably with a wink and a nod, merely giving lip-service to the CDC guidelines, not bothering to think through the reasons for those guidelines and adapt accordingly. And, pray tell, what is the practical difference between a drive-in "service", where the attendees remain in their cars, and staying at home watching the service on the tv or the internet, the ability perhaps then to go home and engage in the brag, "We sure as heck done it and defeated them lib'rals in their police-state tactics"? Dumb is the operative word for the crackhead, and we are quite aware of and quite unimpressed by his having graduated from Duke as an undergraduate and from Harvard Law School. Dumb is as dumb does. The outrageous, gratuitous and wholly irrelevant reference, incidentally, to Justice Hugo Black, one of the greatest civil libertarians ever to sit on the U.S. Supreme Court, is beyond words in its absurdity, signal of the utter and complete stupidity represented by this unqualified Judge, clearly attempting to steer the ailing ship by emotional appeals to unreason, while, not incidentally, protecting the political stance of his boss, the White House occupant who appointed him, with the rhetoric normally reserved to the whackiest of the far-right crowd who attend the boss's rallies and regularly inveigh against reality on the airwaves. The Klan? Man, you are the Klan, or at least their grand poobah protector. "On Fire" church... Do they also have "fiery cross" sermons on Sunday nights, in white satin?)
And, as we know, even if everyone attending any event or gathering is tested for the coronavirus in advance and receives negative results, unlikely for the fact of limited availability of testing at present, they must also be quarantined thereafter and not come in close physical contact with anyone outside the group, or with surfaces, especially plastic or steel, touched recently by same, between the time of the test and the function which they attend, or the test is meaningless. They could be infected by someone else, untested, in the interim. Moreover, the tests are not always reliable in negatively indicating the presence of the virus when it is in its early phases of infection, nevertheless communicable.
Stay at home. Err, if at all, on the side of caution with so much at stake. You will likely get more out of Easter Sunday that way, anyway, as long as you spend your time wisely in the service of others by reading and contemplating quietly edifying material rather than engaging in raucous activities, many times associated with such holier-than-now "churches" and their membership, or unless you only go to church, as we think too many do, just to be seen and to rub your religion all over your sleeves, contrary to Biblical prescription, and most usually contrary to the loose personal standards of behavior set by those persons during the other six days of the week.
Those idiots insisting on attending services in person behave as those who wanted a sacrificial crucifixion that first Easter for their corrupt blood lust. They are certainly not behaving as true Christians, concerned first for the welfare of others.
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