- Pope Francis spoke out against people protesting against coronavirus lockdowns in a New York Times-op Thursday.
- “Looking at the common good is much more than the sum of what is good for individuals,” he wrote.
- The ruling came after the Supreme Court decided to restrict religious gatherings in New York, which government Andrew Cuomo implemented to help restrict the transmission of viruses.
- Visit the Business Insider website for more stories.
Pope Francis slammed people protesting against coronavirus restrictions in the name of “personal freedom” and offered the groups some stern advice in a New York Times edition published Thursday.
“Looking at the common good is much more than the sum of what is good for individuals,”
With the onset of the pandemic in the spring, governments around the world imposed versions of residence orders to help limit COVID-19 transmission. In several countries, including the United States, such restrictions were met with protests from conservative groups.
“As if measures that governments are to introduce for the benefit of their people constitute a kind of political attack on autonomy or personal freedom!” Francis wrote about the anti-lockdown protests.
“It is far too easy for some to take an idea – in this case, for example. Personal freedom – and turn it into an ideology that creates a prism through which they judge everything, “he added.
Although Francis did not name any countries or leaders, he called on governments that “pulled the painful evidence of growing deaths with inevitable, serious consequences.”
The United States has led the world in confirmed cases of coronavirus with nearly 13 million infections as of Friday. President Donald Trump has been heavily criticized for downplaying the virus since the outbreak occurred, and for continuing to avoid its severity as doctors and researchers predict rising death rates for the winter.
In the statement, Francis described the public health crisis as a time “revealing what’s in our hearts” and an opportunity to “reconsider our priorities.”
“If we are to come out of this crisis less selfish than when we went in, we need to let ourselves be touched by the pain of others,” he wrote.
The article happened to come a day after the US Supreme Court ruled against the imposition of restrictions on religious gatherings in New York. The decision blocks Government Andrew Cuomo’s occupancy limits of 10 and 25 people, which he implemented to prevent further spread of the virus. Cuomo later called the verdict “irrelevant.”