I Wonder if They’d Pull this off…

1 06 2009

…if this was a study of the Qu’Ran, by a small group of faithful Muslims?

Pastor David Jones and his wife, Mary, were hosting the weekly study near their church, when they say they were visited by a county code enforcement officer. According to Dean Broyles, an attorney for the Joneses, the county official asked the pastor if they hosted a regular weekly meeting in their home, and if they prayed and said “Amen” and “Praise the Lord” at those meetings.

After replying in the affirmative to those inquiries, a subsequent citation notified the couple they were in violation of county regulations, should stop “religious assembly,” and needed to apply for a “major use” permit to continue the gatherings — a process that could cost several thousands of dollars.

Jones, his wife, and their attorney, Dean Broyles, were interviewed on the Fox News Channel. Broyles says the couple’s rights have been violated.

“The government may not prohibit the free exercise of religion,” says the attorney. “And I believe that our Founding Fathers would roll over in their graves if they saw that here in the year 2009 that a pastor and his wife are being told that they can’t have a simple Bible study in their own home.”

I’m forced to agree with the attorney, this is a blatant violation of Constitutional Rights by the county officer.  This is a private assembly, hurting nobody except perhaps the sensibilities of atheist or agnostic neighbors.  But then again, Christians have rarely been, if ever, a protected class by most governments.  This seems to me another step towards Facism to me.  Granted this is California, so they’re ahead of the social (re-)engineering curve.  It may be a few months/weeks/days/hours (take your pick), before it reaches us.




2 responses

6 06 2009
Tad Cook

It turns out that the code enforcement people got involved in response to complaints from neighbors. Frequent gatherings at this private home often had 10-20 cars attempting to park on a narrow road with no shoulder. There was some question about the ability of fire trucks and other emergency services to respond when there was all this illegal parking.

The code enforcement officer asked some weird questions, which the county apologized for, but she said she was trying to figure out what kind of event was held there in order determine how the law might apply. For instance, some kind of regular commercial activity going on in a neighborhood zoned for residential would definately be a problem.

Anyway, it is all over, probably due to all the publicity this incident got. The code enforcement people apologized, and said there won’t be any more enforcement.

6 06 2009

Thanks for the followup on this. It’s good to see there is some sense in all of this.

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