The free exercise of religion is an essential activity in America, guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution (“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof”). Fifty people crowd onto city buses outside my door several hundred times a day, in the most unsanitary of conditions. Groups of twenty people gather in Golden Gate Park without masks on every sunny day, four blocks from my door. Hundreds gather in Costco from 9-9 every day. Dozens of people eat at restaurants on the streets around my church, without masks. The mayor addresses hundreds of people in a protest at City Hall, many of whom wear no masks. And the city is telling my church that we cannot have a gathering of more than 12 people, outside, for an activity that is specifically protected by the Constitution?
Clearly some people in the city government and the news media find religion intolerable. They may hate religion, and they may hate religious persons. They may not restrict our rights as free American citizens.