How many constitutional rights will be curtailed during the coronavirus?

Guns, assembly, even religion are now on the chopping block.

The stories are coming in from all over the country. Virginia has closed down gun sales. New York has told places of worship to shut down or the state will do it for them. California and other states have severely restricted freedom of movement.

The constitutionally guaranteed rights of freedom to bear arms, freedom of religion, and freedom of assembly are all thus limited, if not banned, in those locales.

We can all understand common sense measures to fight the coronavirus. But given that government at all levels love to gain power at the expense of the people, use crises to expedite that process, and given that once government gains those powers it fights like hell to keep them (the personal income tax was supposed to be a temporary levy to rearm America due to WWI), how many more rights will we lose during this public health crisis? And when will we get them back?

True, the most drastic measures are being taken in states run by leftist Democrats with a serious thirst for government power at any cost.

The examples cited above all come from states with leftist Democrat governors. Also true, conservative states like Texas, Oklahoma, and Idaho have done all they can to preserve constitutional rights and limit economic damage.

But if the coronavirus continues to peak, as many experts foresee, then how far will rights be limited even in Republican states?

For the duration, which could be several months if not longer? How many more rights like free expression, trial by jury, freedom of the press, and redress of grievances are at risk?

In states run by leftist governors, will criticizing a state response to the coronavirus become “hate speech”? Will they abolish juries because of social distancing concerns? Will press criticisms of governments in leftist states be classified as a “disturbance of the peace” or “impeding public order”? Will state governments ignore legitimate concerns of the citizenry on important issues, citing overriding coronavirus matters?

With President Trump in the White House, none of these things are likely on a federal basis. But states with power- hungry veto-proof Democrat majorities beware. Your basic constitutional rights already have been seriously limited. In the immediate future, it could go much further than that.

This piece was written by PoliZette Staff on March 30, 2020. It originally appeared in LifeZette and is used by permission.

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