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Letter to the Editor
(This letter was sent to Maryland Governor Larry Hogan)

Dear Maryland Governor Hogan,

     Your current Coronavirus restrictions are far too arbitrary and conflicting:  You cite the federally-illegal smoked marijuana industry in MD as “essential” while literally shutting down churches which collect and distribute contributions to fund essential services for low-income people, including homeless shelters, food banks, and soup kitchens, and provide comforting healing services for sick and dying citizens.

… it is mystifying why you would virtually protect smoking marijuana as “essential” to cure Coronavirus.

     Our SMC Health Department has long identified smoked “medical” marijuana as documented lung-damaging, addictive, immune-system compromising, Gateway drug to overdose deaths.  As such it is mystifying why you would virtually protect smoking marijuana as “essential” to cure Coronavirus.

     The overly-restrictive 10-person rule has not only closed churches, it has destroyed normal health care services from physicians and clinics who are unable or too afraid to stay open to provide essential health services for nearly all their patients in St. Mary’s County.  There is no accepted scientific study justifying this draconian restriction compared to a 50-person limit that could provide reasonable flexibility for critical services without compromising reasonable health protection from Coronavirus harm.

     The 10-person restriction also has been discriminatorily applied as illustrated (1) by unthreatened Mennonite and Amish churches which still conduct 3-4 hour Sunday worship services that include 100-150 people in cramped seating, with Holy lip-kissing, and prolonged closely-seated pot-luck meals and social fellowship among families and friends. 

A busy day at Walmart in California, Mdl, after the newly renovated SuperCenter opened. THE CHESAPEAKE TODAY photo

     And (2) another example of illegal discrimination is in your Orders allowing unlimited occupancy in Walmart whose capacity is 1,070, and other box stores while restricting occupancy with the church-killing 10-person dictate.    Federal lawsuits against such obvious blatant discriminatory and Unconstitutional violation of the Citizens Right to Free Worship of Religion, are being considered against those responsible for such Liberty-destroying abominations.

     We have a plan to correct the above grievances that can be a win-win for all.  But the current plan that is killing the little guys with unemployment and increasing debt, is not going to produce a legacy anyone can  be proud of.

     Both you, Gov. Hogan and Dr. Meena Brewster enjoy high approval ratings—up until now.  Please let us help you maintain and improve your performance in this critical struggle, and justify your high ratings.  Thanks,

DeForest Rathbone, Member and Trustee

Callaway Baptist Church

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