[Ed. – Yes. Never has a people foreseen such developments for so long, and yet seemed so paralyzed when they arrived. We can yet conquer this, but it will take help beyond ourselves.]
The justice, who is seen as a conservative, told a meeting of the Federalist Society late on Thursday he was not underplaying the severity of the crisis or criticizing any officials for their response.
But he added: “We have never before seen restrictions as severe, extensive and prolonged as those experienced for most of 2020.”
“The COVID crisis has served as sort of a constitutional stress test,” he said during his address over a video link for the conservative organization’s annual conference.
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“Think of worship services! Churches closed on Easter Sunday, synagogues closed for Passover in Yom Kippur”, he said.
“It pains me to say this,” Alito added, “but in certain quarters, religious liberty is fast becoming a disfavored right.”
The justice said freedom of speech was also under threat.