During an interview aired on Monday’s broadcast of the Fox News Channel’s “Special Report,” Attorney General William Barr stated that the protests in the wake of George Floyd’s death have raised the question of why people who are exercising their First Amendment rights by protesting “have broader rights” than those who want to exercise their First Amendment rights by going to church with social distancing rules.
Barr said [relevant exchange begins around 11:50] that while the original restrictions were justified due to the uncertain nature of the disease and the pace of its spread, “I think that, as time has gone by, the degree of impingement on fundamental liberties has never been anything like this in the United States. Nationally, forbidding people from engaging in their livelihood, telling them to stay home — sort of a form of house arrest in many places.”
Host Bret Baier then asked, “Have these protests and demonstrations and what we’ve seen across the country changed that dynamic?”
Barr responded, “I think it should. Because it raises a fundamental question, which is, why should some people who are enjoying their First Amendment rights by going out and protesting have broader rights than other people who may want to exercise, their, for example, religious First Amendment rights and go to church as long as social distancing rules and things like that are complied with.”
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