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Newsom's edicts to churches cost us taxpayers a bundle

by Barbara Simpson (originally posted on WND News Center)

It’s amazing what doesn’t get in daily news coverage even though it’s something that affects thousands – sometimes millions of people.

I admit, even though I used to work in daily television news as an anchor, and an investigative reporter, I ignore most TV news today. In fact, I get most of my news by scanning the internet. I look at a whole variety of sources, and it’s amazing what I find.

A perfect example is what I discovered today – and I give advance warning to Californians, get ready for a shock!

California media have been filled with the boasts of Gov. Gavin Newsom about what he is calling his $75 billion budget surplus. He has been quoted as saying it “is an historic, transformational budget.” While budget analysts for the legislature are not quite so effusive, the fact remains that any discussion about how much money the state government has to spend on the myriad of items in the budget, something was just announced that is being ignored in mainstream coverage of the issue.

Think back to the beginning of the COVID scare. Remember when it was announced that the governor ordered that church services be discontinued? The idea was that it was not safe for people to be in such situations where they might transmit the virus. There was a whole list of regulations concerning such gatherings – the most restrictive in the country – ranging from total elimination of those services to, later, a slowly relaxed version of how people might worship.

As reported by Liberty Counsel, as of March 19, 2020, worship was prohibited. Then, May 26 to July 12, no more than 100 people. July 13, 2020, to April 8, 2021 – no worship for over 90% of California. April 9-12 – restrictions on singing and chanting continue but those on Bible studies lifted. On May 17, 2021, discriminatory restrictions on churches were permanently removed.

When orders were first announced from Sacramento, Pastor Che Ahn, founder of Harvest Rock Church, and the Harvest International Ministry were threatened by the Pasadena criminal prosecutor, that the staff and anyone who attended church would face criminal charges, each of up to a year in prison and $1,000 daily fines!

Pastor Ahn resisted these unconstitutional executive orders, took the issues to court, and now it has been announced: He won! Every church in California is now free of these rules.

On May 17, a California District Court entered an order approving Liberty Counsel’s settlement of the lawsuit on behalf of Harvest Rock Church and Harvest International Ministry against Gov. Newsom.

It’s the first statewide, permanent injunction in the country against COVID restrictions on churches and places of worship. There can be NO restrictions on church worship the state. Keep in mind that in June, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that Newsom’s restrictions on home Bible study and worship violate the First Amendment.

It is clear this case sets precedent not only for California but for the country in protecting our right to freedom of worship.

An important part of the final agreement, to which the governor agreed, is that he must pay Liberty Counsel $1,350,000 to reimburse attorney fees and costs.


Yes, that is part of the agreement, and that money will come from funds Californians paid in taxes to the state – NOT from Newsom’s own bank account.

It seems to me it’s an important news story. Think of it: More than a million and a quarter dollars to be paid as a fine for something the governor did – but I’ve not seen one line of coverage in local newspapers nor on broadcast news.

I guess those news editors want to protect Newsom from criticism, especially since he is facing possible recall. The only news we Californians are getting is about Newsom is positive – about his “wonderful surplus” and how he is spreading out millions of dollars across the state as a means to soften voters so they will not vote him out of office.

The cynical among us might say he is “buying votes,” but no matter.

What to me is most important to notice is that media are as biased as all get out and that the idea of a “free press” has gotten mixed up in politics to a point that I’m not sure there is any way out.

I’ll be interested to see how long it takes – if ever – for media, especially local California media, to cover the final court decision and the massive bill Californians will have to pay because of Gavin Newsom.

I don’t know about you, but that’s not why I pay taxes.

Follow Barbara Simpson on Facebook.

This article was originally published by the WND News Center.

Big Tech censorship has been expanding beyond just Conservatives… Christians are next!

While many of us have been warning about the coming persecution of Christians, I don’t think any of us thought that it would be ramping up so quickly. While we are luckily not facing physical persecution yet, such as beatings or death, we are facing censorship, deplatforming and even jail time in some instances. These are just the birth pangs of what is coming next.

While we still have a voice here at The GateKeepers, we are doing everything that we can to bypass the algorithmic walls put up by Big Tech and the Social Media companies like Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. Our videos used to get thousands of views across all of our platforms, while now they are being throttled and hardly getting distributed at all. An added wrinkle is that, while our video content is seeing lower views, traffic to our website has never been higher. Over the past year we’ve seen a 700% increase in traffic, and it’s been amazing to experience this kind of growth. Because of this, we’ll be launching GKTV very soon, hosting all of our shows exclusively on our platform.

While The GateKeepers started out as nothing more than a blog for me to post my articles, it has now expanded into a podcast network featuring fifteen shows, a publishing company that has published three books over the past year and we are now hosting conferences on a regular basis. We’ve seen the addition of contributors to The GateKeepers such as Denise McAllister, Pastor Cary Gordon, Pastor Ken Peters, Dr Mike Spaulding, Dr Bobby Lopez and many other amazing Christian leaders. Our lineup of shows has expanded, as well, featuring shows such as The Shining Light Podcast, Conversations with Jeff, The Big Brown Gadfly, Battlefront: SouthGate and The Verum Monitae Report with Dr Mike Spaulding, in addition the the several other shows we also carry on The GateKeepers.

While we’ve seen some amazing growth and expansion, we are also working hard to make this be a long-term play, and with that comes with how to fund our work here. I’ve intentionally not turned The GateKeepers into a non-profit organization because I don’t want to become beholden to the government, and I also don’t want to be focused on sending out fundraising letters constantly begging for money like most non-profit ministries do.

Instead, we have our online book store, are hosting online conferences and have our Plugged In membership program. Right now we are funded exclusively through these three different avenues. We are especially excited about our Plugged In membership, as this brings so much added value to you as a thank you for supporting our work here at The GateKeepers.

Becoming a Plugged In member provides access to the weekly episode of The GateKeepers Podcast, the monthly episode of Connected, free access to all of our online conferences, the recordings from previous online conferences and 30% off in The GK Store. If you would like to support us by becoming a Plugged In member, click here.

However, we’ve also been getting a lot of requests from supporters asking how they can donate to help support The GateKeepers. We are extremely grateful for these requests, as this will help us to expand even further and provide more quality Biblical content. If you would like to help support to The GateKeepers, you can donate through PayPal here.

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