State Representative Ty Bodden has introduced legislation that would amend article one section eighteen of our state constitution by forbidding government at any level from closing down churches or forbidding gatherings during a state or national emergency. Events over the last several years made it very clear that every level of government will jettison this foundational freedom in a declared emergency in spite of the fact that one of the main purposes of a constitution is to protect rights and freedoms in emergencies.
When government can shut down places of worship, be they Christian churches, Jewish synagogues, Muslim mosques, or Buddhist or Hindu temples, our religious freedom is directly threatened because government is interfering with religious practice. This proposal would ultimately need to be passed by Wisconsin voters on a statewide ballot.
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