"Columbus coronavirus protests at the Ohio Statehouse" by / CC BY-SA 4.0

Why religious freedom stokes coronavirus protests in the U.S., but not Canada

May 5, 2020

By Pamela E. Klassen

Religious freedom, cherished as an American ideal, has been frequently invoked in the United States during protests against COVID-19 public health measures.

In Canada, forms of protests — including by churches — are more likely to focus on the systemic underfunding of long-term care and homeless shelters or the lack of sufficient medical and water infrastructure in Indigenous communities.

Why the difference?

Across the U.S., conservative Christians flouted state and municipal social distancing orders as late as March 31, sometimes by overtly breaking the law, claiming that God, not the state, will protect the people.

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