A federal judge issued a preliminary injunction on Friday against New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, Attorney General Letitia James, and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio for exceeding their executive limits by restricting worship services in the name of COVID-19 while condoning the mass Black Lives Matter protests.
The injunction was issued by U.S. District Judge Gary L. Sharpe, a George W. Bush appointee, in favor of two Catholic priests and three Orthodox Jewish congregants represented by the Thomas More Society, a not-for-profit public interest law firm.
The plaintiffs filed their suit in the Northern District of New York following protests and looting that took place in the Big City due to George Floyd’s death while in the custody of Minneapolis police.
Sharpe said in his federal order that de Blasio has "simultaneous pro-protest/anti-religious gathering messages" when he “actively encouraged participation in protests and openly discouraged religious gatherings and threatened religious worshipers.”
“Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio could have just as easily discouraged protests, short of condemning their message, in the name of public health and exercised discretion to suspend enforcement for public safety reasons instead of encouraging what they knew was a flagrant disregard of the outdoor limits and social distancing rules,” the judge continued.
“They could have also been silent. But by acting as they did, Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio sent a clear message that mass protests are deserving of preferential treatment.”
Sharpe’s injunction means that Cuomo, James, and de Blasio are "enjoined and restrained from enforcing any indoor gathering limitations” against the plaintiff’s houses of worship “greater than imposed for Phase 2 industries,” so long as worshippers follow social distancing guidelines.
The named officials also are prohibited from “enforcing any limitation for outdoor gatherings provided that participants in such gatherings follow social distancing requirements as set forth in the applicable executive orders and guidance.”
Thomas More listed among the many violations by the officials the fact that de Blasio ignored both social distancing and the 10-person limit when he failed to wear a face mask on June 4, when he addressed a mass political gathering at Cadman Plaza. Just days later, a police officer enforcing Cuomo and de Blasio’s 10-person limit on “non-essential gatherings” kicked out Hasidic Jewish children from a Williamsburg park.
Back in April, de Blasio threatened the city’s Jewish community with arrests and prosecutions for “illegal” religious gatherings after Williamsburg police broke up the funeral or Rabbi Chaim Mertz.
My message to the Jewish community, and all communities, is this simple: the time for warnings has passed. I have instructed the NYPD to proceed immediately to summons or even arrest those who gather in large groups. This is about stopping this disease and saving lives. Period.— Mayor Bill de Blasio (@NYCMayor) April 29, 2020
De Blasio was ultimately forced to apologize for targeting the Jewish community, calling his remarks “tough love.”
Christopher Ferrara, special counsel with Thomas More, celebrated Judge Sharpe’s decision, calling Cuomo’s executive orders a “sham” that “went right out the window as soon as he and Mayor de Blasio saw a mass protest movement they favored taking to the streets by the thousands.”
"Suddenly, the limit on ‘mass gatherings’ was no longer necessary to ‘save lives,’" Ferrara said in a statement to Fox News. “Yet they were continuing to ban high school graduations and other outdoor gatherings exceeding a mere 25 people.”
Ferrara’s remarks apply to more public figures than merely Cuomo and de Blasio. The left-leaning establishment that has castigated anyone who dares to question the idea that everything should be shut down for the sake of coronavirus conveniently forget all about their COVID-zealoutry whenever Black Lives Matter demonstrations numbering hundreds or even thousands are brought up.
De Blasio, in fact, likely would prefer not to know whether BLM events are helping spread coronavirus. Contact tracers hired by New York City to interview COVID-positive individuals must abide by a rule forbidding them to ask whether those who test positive for the virus have attended the protests.
“That’s the one variable in this equation that we’re not sure of: We don’t know what the effect of those protests are,” said Gov. Cuomo.
Yet even while Democrats allegedly remain uncertain about the effects of the protests, they are completely sure about the effects of President Trump’s rallies. The president faced steep criticism from the opposition party and the media for holding a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
“But Trump has shown no concern for the safety and wellbeing of Americans for the entirety of his presidency — why start now?” said Democratic National Committee War Room Director Adrienne Watson. “He is only concerned about his own reelection and distracting from his failed response to the pandemic that led to more than a hundred thousand Americans dying and 20 million unemployed.”
The agenda is so clear, even federal judges are beginning to see the light.
Photo: pcess609/iStock/Getty Images Plus
Luis Miguel is a marketer and writer whose journalistic endeavors shed light on the Deep State, the immigration crisis, and the enemies of freedom. Follow his exploits on Facebook, Twitter, Bitchute, and at luisantoniomiguel.com.