SMITHFIELD – As the angst over Governor Roy Cooper’s shutdown orders have grown, many have had one eye on law enforcement, particularly sheriffs, watching for signs of resistance to enforcing such orders. After all, it is law enforcement officers that are put in the unfortunate position of enforcing inconsistent, draconian orders that specifically restrict core rights of citizens. And it is the solidarity and commitment from law enforcement leaders that any community requires if they plan to successfully reclaim jurisdiction over their own lives from the emergency overreach spurred by coronavirus fears.
Enter Johnston County Sheriff Steve Bizzell.
Sheriff Bizzell, not known locally for being tentative, issued a message to Governor Roy Cooper and he didn’t mince words.
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Sheriff Bizzell was one of a dozen or so sheriffs that earlier wrote Cooper to ask that he advise the order regarding church services because enforcement of such was inconsistent with other establishments and detrimental to community welfare.
Their calls went unanswered, essentially. As did the calls from senior lawmakers, or prominent Christian leaders, and constitutional lawyers.
Given the unprecedented situation, there’s little else to do for those elected leaders with loyalty to the moral absolutes protected by the U.S. Constitution, but for them to put their foot down as Sheriff Bizzell has.
The only other option is to hang it up and go home. Though, something tells us there are way too many ‘Steve Bizzell’s in the First in Freedom State for that won’t much like that option.
Read more about Sheriff Bizzell’s stand for free exercise of religion from the JoCo Report.