The Ohio House just passed House Resolution 194, which urges the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom to add Canada to the Special Watch List of countries where the government engages in violations of religious freedom.
The resolution notes that Ohio has a vested interest in the affairs of Canada, being their number one foreign trading partner in both exports and imports, so Ohio citizens found it very concerning that Canada had taken such an open stance against the freedom of religion during the Covid-19 pandemic.
The resolution lists the following occurrences of concern:
- Pastor James Coates of Edmonton, Alberta was jailed for thirty-five days and in solitary confinement for seven days straight for holding religious services.
- Brothers Artur and David Pawlowski, pastors from Alberta, Canada were arrested and spent three days in jail for organizing a church service.
- Pastor Tobias Tissen of Steinbach, Manitoba, was arrested for holding an outdoor service.
And they didn't even address them all.
There's also Jim Stephens who was arrested after his church went underground.
The resolution also addresses Canada's C-4 Bill, which broadly penalizes any sort of conversion message regarding LGBTQ ideology. Critics have suggested that the Bill could carry a prison sentence of up to five years for merely expressing a biblical view of marriage, which can even be interpreted as preaching in the pulpit.
With all these curbs in religious freedom, the Ohio legislature thinks Canada should be placed on the Religious Freedoms Watch list. Senator Josh Hawley of Missouri said the same thing in 2021 even before things got so bad:
I am troubled that our Canadian neighbors are effectively being forced to gather in secret, undisclosed locations to exercise their basic freedom to worship. Frankly, I would expect this sort of religious crackdown in Communist China, not in a prominent Western nation like Canada. Canadian authorities' arrest of faith leaders and seizure of church property, among other enforcement actions, appear to constitute systematic, ongoing, and egregious violations of religious freedom.
Of course it's up to the U.S. Department of Justice to add Canada to the watchlist.
I'd say they are way too busy investigating parents as domestic terrorists to worry about what Canada is doing.
P.S. Now check out our latest video 👇