5/6/20

Today I went to the county testing sight in south county. Unfortunately, because I did not have my patient ID number, they could not test me. One of the nurses at the testing site told me that they are having a good turnout of people desiring to be tested. She also stated that she encourages people to get tested even if they do not have symptoms, so if they are asymptomatic carriers, they won’t unknowingly spread the virus to others.

County health officers reported four new confirmed cases of COVID-19 today, bringing the county’s total to 208 cases. Health officials say another 42 patients are recovering at home, while five people are hospitalized, including three who are in the ICU. There are 160 people fully recovered from the virus. San Luis Obispo County has had one death attributed to COVID-19. Health officials say 1,799 coronavirus tests have been conducted at the county public health lab, while an additional 1,840 tests have been conducted at private labs.

Cal Poly officials announced summer classes would continue with the current virtually format, and the university will offer more summer classes than usual and at a lower price. Cuesta College officials have also reported that their summer classes will be conducted online.

With more businesses opening, churches are starting to insist on being allowed to reopen. They are beginning to demand their First Amendment Rights. There have been several lawsuits filed across the nation for violation of churches’ rights. Vice President Mike Pence reacted today to the Justice Department’s decision to side with a Virginia church, which sued after being fined for holding a service during the coronavirus pandemic, Pence saying he “strongly” agrees with the ruling.

The First Amendment states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.”

The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution protects the right to freedom of religion and freedom of expression from government interference. It prohibits any laws that establish a national religion, impede the free exercise of religion, abridge the freedom of speech, infringe upon the freedom of the press, interfere with the right to peaceably assemble, or prohibit citizens from petitioning for a governmental redress of grievances. It was adopted into The Bill of Rights in 1791. The Supreme Court interprets the extent of the protection afforded to these rights. The First Amendment has been interpreted by the Court as applying to the entire federal government even though it is only expressly applicable to Congress. Furthermore, the Court has interpreted the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment as protecting the rights in the First Amendment from interference by state governments. 

Two clauses in the First Amendment guarantee freedom of religion. The Establishment Clause prohibits the government from passing legislation to establish an official religion or preferring one religion over another. It enforces the “separation of church and state.” However, some governmental activity related to religion has been declared constitutional by the Supreme Court. For example, providing bus transportation for parochial school students and the enforcement of “blue laws” is not prohibited. The Free Exercise Clause prohibits the government, in most instances, from interfering with a person’s practice of their religion.

This is the entrance to the Grover Beach COVID-19 testing sight.

A car parked on the side of a building

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©Copywrite MPFitch

People filling out their paperwork to be tested for the coronavirus.

A group of people sitting on a brick building

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©Copywrite MPFitch

Published by mpfitch

I am a retired disabled veteran and am actively involved with a Baptist Church on the Central Coast of CA. I am a photographer who likes to shoot portraits and scenic photographs.

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