A pastor, on house arrest, vows to further violate quarantine orders in Louisiana

Talk about Making America Great Again! Why not do it by violating the law?

Reader Ken sent a link to this video, made three days ago, which truly shows a man who serves God by risking the lives of his flock in defiance of Caesar’s order and snarfing up the government pandemic checks given to his parisoners. He’s even wearing an ankle bracelet, but remains defiant. LOCK HIM UP!

Ken’s words:

Louisiana pastor Tony Spell (who has successfully petitioned over 200 members of his flock to donate their pandemic checks to him) was recently allowed off the house-arrest he was placed on for violating state quarantine orders and given permission to hold either outdoor services or indoors services at 25% capacity. (Spell was represented in court by the infamous Judge Roy Moore.)

Below is his video response, in which he says he will comply with the orders “whenever they sell popsicles in hell” and “set up an ice-skating rink on the Lake of Fire,” and promises to operate his church at 125% capacity.

Religion poisons everything, and this dude has drunk deeply of the Kool-Aid.


  1. J Cook
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    His coffers must be getting empty and it’s time to fleece the flock again.

  2. mallardbrad
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

    Another I – D – 10 – T. Freaking amazing that this person as not yet contracted the virus. Such arrogance is beyond comprehension.

  3. GBJames
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 1:37 pm | Permalink


  4. Ken Kukec
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:02 pm | Permalink

    A humble servant of Our Lord is he.

    In one sense at least, the Good Reverend lives up to the billing he hands himself with his quote from 2 Samuel 6:22 to “yet be more vile than thus.”

  5. enl
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    There is really nothing I can say here that will not involve extensive profanity. So, censorbot-powers-activate!

    I’ve left the house (philosophically- house, yard, and local walking path) for a total of less than ten hours of the last eight weeks, all for essentials. I should imagine most here are working it about the same. I’ve been doing remote instruction for that time, with restrictions than make it very difficult for the students to learn and for me to give meaningful instruction or feedback (no real-time interaction permitted until a week ago), so I have been pretty much been doing nothing else (pulling the plug for the day now, and I’ve been at it for 7 of the last 9 hours– took time for lunch and to wash the pollen and dust off my truck and porch)

    And this entitled is going to kill a non-negligible portion of “his flock” and make a larger portion miserable in the name of his ego and wallet, justifying it with his god.

    Lovely. Will he be charged with any crimes? Not ing likely.

  6. Randall Schenck
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    The moron can have 100 percent of my pandemic money which was zero. Does his mother know what he does for a living?

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

      There’d be less shame having a daughter in a bordello than a son a pastor of a megachurch.

      • Randall Schenck
        Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:55 pm | Permalink

        That’s for sure. At least she would be making on honest living.

      • Posted May 17, 2020 at 3:02 pm | Permalink

        Oh, I like that. +1.

    • steve oberski
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

      She sure does, it’s a family run crime syndicate.

      Central Police: Pastor’s mother posted emergency number on Facebook

      emergency number on Facebook
      Photo by: Courtesy of THE ADVOCATE
      By: KATC NEWSPosted at 2:02 PM, Apr 29, 2020 and last updated 1:37 PM, May 01, 2020
      The Central Police Department is apologizing to citizens who can’t get through on the emergency line. They say it’s tied up with calls from people who heeded the suggestion from the mother of a controversial pastor to call them.

      “Magi Spell, mother of Pastor Tony Spell of Life Tabernacle Church has posted the Central Police Department’s phone number on her Facebook page encouraging everyone to call our Department. This phone number is the line we receive all of our calls on including our emergency calls from Citizens needing our assistance or help due to a life changing emergency. If you can not reach us due to our lines being tied up please keep trying. If you have an emergency please call 911. Again we are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause,” the chief wrote on the post.


  7. Jonathan Dore
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    Although I’m no fan of the concept of “privilege” as a social-political force, you do occasionally see egregious examples such as this. Here is a man supremely confident that he will always be given an easy ride by law enforcement and the courts, with a nod and a wink from policemen, lawyers, jurors, and probably the judge as well, in letting him off with a succession of slaps on the wrist. The idea of religion getting a free pass from the rules that govern everyone else seems completely normal and justified to him and those around him. He actually thinks he *deserves* that privilege.

  8. Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

    What a disgusting piece of work!

  9. Jenny Haniver
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:29 pm | Permalink

    Congenital hookworm?

  10. chrism
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    I see ‘The Great Commission’ on his poster in the video thumbnail. Tells me all I need to know. We had an LPN, otherwise kind, caring and hardworking, who was a baptist of some stripe, and couldn’t help herself when it came to The Great Commission. Every blasted time I had a palliative patient, she be in there asking if they were ‘saved’ and promising them hellfire and brimstone if they weren’t sufficiently saved by the right kind of pastor. Eventually, one lovely old Scottish war bride who was an atheist and had lung cancer complained to me. I raised some holy hell of my own with the administration, and the result? I was told she had been spoken to, but she smiled sweetly at me and carried on. I guess the atheist physician was the odd one out. Of all Christians, I find the baptists the most obnoxious.

  11. W.T. Effingham
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:48 pm | Permalink

    I’m rather certain this moron (“Reverend” Spell) is the lame excuse of a patronizing straw-man thrashing geek who provides a plethora of features over on Friendly Atheist. The ankle-bracelet is his badge of courage earned by recklessly backing a vehicle toward a guy who was holding a placard that warned passersby of Spell’s cult’s malfeasance. This drama queen has to be one of the ten best examples of Grifters Gone Wild During Covid-19. If only Spell had a clue about how his exploits motivate the opposition ..

  12. BJ
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

    We’re fast approaching the point where a significant portion of the population will no longer comply with shutdown procedures, and we can’t arrest/lock up all of them. Not only is it unfeasible to enforce these procedures from a logistical standpoint, but from a PR one as well. Just imagine the daily images and videos of ordinary citizens being arrested, often at gunpoint, for doing what would otherwise be considered normal activity.

    Either we will have to ease restrictions so people aren’t breaking the law, or risk some kind of low-level sense of anarchy. It will result in more deaths from COVID-19, but I would argue that it’s the only way forward from both a utilitarian and consequentialist perspective (utilitarian because we may not be able to regain control of the populace or trust in our institutions if things descend into anarchy, and consequentialist because our society values liberty and the ability to prosper over a certain threshold of danger).

    • BJ
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

      I would even argue that easing restrictions (as opposed to some level of “anarchy” (I don’t know what else to call it)) is the right move from a deontological perspective. As a nation, we tend to consider freedom and the right to pursue prosperity to be morally right, and (what amounts to) the imprisonment of people who aren’t criminals (under normal conditions) to be an absolute wrong. The Founders and the Constitution they wrote seem to come from what they believed was natural law, and that sentiment seems to permeate our cultural attitudes to this day. The government has a duty to its citizens to protect them, but it’s greatest duty is largely considered to be protecting “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Protecting life is only morally right up to a certain point; where that point lies nobody really knows, but there is a limit, and it seems that a significant portion of the population believes that limit has been exceeded. Whether or not they’re correct about the limit is immaterial at this point because the question now is what duty the government has when it comes to the treatment of this segment of the population. My feeling is that most Americans would see mass arrests and imprisonment, curfews, etc. for activities like running businesses and hanging out in public as morally egregious.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 4:06 pm | Permalink

      This clown was given the option of ministering to his entire flock outdoors, or running his church at 25% capacity. You don’t think that’s sufficient for the nonce?

      Nearly every state has eased its shelter-in-place restrictions. The nation could likely be reopened in relative safety if only we had some national leadership from the top that wasn’t dilatory, incompetent, and incoherent — if, say, businesses were to reopen in phases according to the recently leaked CDC guidelines that Trump tried to bury such that they’d never see the light of day.

      The vast majority of Americans are in favor of maintaining social-distancing requirements. The demonstrations against them have largely been astroturfed affairs, funded by plutocrats, rather than spontaneous grassroots outpourings. And no government has undertaken (or so much as yet even threatened) mass incarcerations of social-distancing scofflaws.

      At least 72 new cases of COVID-19 in Wisconsin were likely transmitted during the anti-quarantine demonstrations in Madison a few weeks ago. Hope those covidiots enjoy their newfound “liberty.”

      (Other than that, how ya doin’, BJ?) 🙂

      • BJ
        Posted May 17, 2020 at 4:30 pm | Permalink

        Honestly, I’m not arguing about any of that. You’re right about all of it. Every single point you made. I’m just talking about where we might be in one month, two months, or three months from now, and I don’t like what I’m seeing. Hell, even supposedly smart people I know (even family members, I’m sad to say) are starting to break the rules, going to each others’ houses, giving hugs, sitting right next to each other, picking out of the same appetizer box as everyone else. It seems even people I know, respect, and consider intelligent are reaching some sort of limit. My parents were completely following the recommendations when all of this began (though I had to convince them by sitting them down and saying, “imagine if you died just because you wanted to go shoot skeet or play mah jong today.” That was back when the shooting range was still open), but their patience has been whittled away and I’ve been watching them slowly break more and more rules, and I’m powerless to stop them. My skills of persuasion are either poor or only go so far.

        Anyway, considering the circumstances, I’m doing pretty well! I’ve met up with family a few times, where we’d all bring extra tables and each group that lives together would sit at their table, spread across the deck. We all kept enough distance between us that we were safe, but still able to talk and get together (and get a little drunk). It’s nice to have that normalcy every once in awhile, but everything else is obviously not business as usual, and even those moments of normalcy are far less frequent. No tennis. No massages. No skating. Only going out to get groceries and prescriptions when absolutely necessary. It’s all so very strange.

        How have you been? And thanks for asking 🙂

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted May 17, 2020 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

          My situation is such that the pandemic has probably had a less severe impact on me than most — but I still get goddamn stir-crazy from time to time.

          Or as my dad used to say whenever anyone asked him how he was doing, “Miserable as usual” (although he always said it with a smile on his face, so people knew he was just pulling their leg). 🙂

          • GBJames
            Posted May 17, 2020 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

            Today is the first day I‘be gotten stir-crazy. We’ve had 3.4 inches of rain so far today and the day’s just been depressing.

          • BJ
            Posted May 17, 2020 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

            I’m lucky that I live somewhere with a lot of hiking and beautiful drives all around me, so I’ve finally been able to hike now that the parks are semi-open. The parks are actually “closed” more than half of the times I show up, as they block off the parking lot once a certain number of people have entered. Still, it’s nice just to drive through the mountains in the middle of the day, or after dinner when the sun starts to go down. I’ve been able to get some great pictures and have fun finding old roads tucked away in places I’ve never found before.

            I have gained the equivalent of the “freshman 15.” What could we call that? You’re better with words than I am.

            Actually, I guess “the COVID 19” works!

    • Jonathan Dore
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 11:31 pm | Permalink

      “… our society values liberty and the ability to prosper over a certain threshold of danger.”

      Fine if the only one being endangered is the person exercising their liberty. The problem in this case is that the people asserting their liberty are causing danger to *others*, whether they like it or not. The fact that they don’t even recognize this is an issue tells you all you need to know about their respect for the rights of others.

      • BJ
        Posted May 18, 2020 at 10:29 am | Permalink

        I’m not arguing with you. but think about the many other times we tolerate this: anti-vaxxers (we don’t lock them up, even though they could one day cause a pandemic themselves. They’ve already brought back measles), wars where people were drafted, etc. I doubt most of the people who support the current rules would tolerate daily images of business owners, beach and park-goers, etc. being arrested at gunpoint and given jail time for very long before they turned on their local law enforcement (at the very least). People tend to act on emotion, not logic.

        • tomh
          Posted May 18, 2020 at 10:37 am | Permalink

          I don’t know what the draft has to do with this, but thousands of people have been jailed for refusing to be drafted.

  13. Steve Gerrard
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 2:52 pm | Permalink

    At least we know that his reward for this charming behavior is that he will get to find out if they really do sell those popsicles and have that skating rink.

    • W.T. Effingham
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

      +1! First good chuckle I’ve had all day. He did appear to be “Revved-Up” and itching for a fight when he spewed out that venom. (I bet Captain Feathersword of “The Wiggles” could take him down in twelve seconds.)

  14. Posted May 17, 2020 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    Outside of the fair lunatics that are described here, I wonder if serious church-goers might be satisfied with parking lot services, where attendees stay in their cars. Maybe drive through communion?

  15. Posted May 17, 2020 at 3:25 pm | Permalink

    I’m really starting to worry about how this all ends. Trump and the Republicans are now portraying the upcoming election as a fight for freedom. They are saying that they want to see the country “open up” and regard the virus as fake news or simply in the rear view mirror. They are also going to portray Democrats and the Left as elitists who invented the virus in order to take down Trump and are using it to force people to stay home and lose their economic livelihood. This is BS of course but its a strong message nonetheless.

    One way for Trump and his followers to be proven wrong is for lots of people to die before November, thereby making the virus “real”. Even then the dead don’t vote. We’re counting on the survivors feeling bad about indirectly killing grandma and grandpa. I wouldn’t bet on this happening.

    • GBJames
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 3:31 pm | Permalink

      Recent polling shows his support among seniors plummeting. That spells doom for him. Deaths are going to climb especially in red states most intent on rapid opening.

      • Posted May 17, 2020 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

        Yes, but I suspect his loss among seniors will be more than offset by those who feel oppressed economically by the shutdown. It is all about who they blame for their troubles. We might argue that this all could have been avoided, or minimized at least, if Trump hadn’t ignored the pandemic for a couple of months. However, that’s a hypothetical. We can point to South Korea as a role model but can Americans really relate to that? It’s a difficult case to make.

        • GBJames
          Posted May 17, 2020 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

          The “Great economy” was his main claim to success just two months ago. Don’t you remember? He will be blamed for the collapse. He’s toast although there’s much more damage he’ll do before he’s gone.

          • Posted May 17, 2020 at 5:03 pm | Permalink

            Yes, but he will blame that on the pandemic:

            “Who would have thought the Chinese would do this to us? And who thought the Democrats would help them because they hate your President?”

            • GBJames
              Posted May 17, 2020 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

              “But he will blame…”

              This is a constant. He always blames others. It doesn’t work when you’re president and people lose jobs and lives. He’s toast.

      • Posted May 17, 2020 at 6:48 pm | Permalink

        Yes, Trump’s negligent homicide will fall especially heavily on some of his supporters. I can’t even muster a proper schadenfreude for appreciating the irony.

        • Posted May 17, 2020 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

          We’ll see. I suspect the fraction of the population that experiences the virus so negatively will be really small. In order to make them take it seriously, they probably have to be hospitalized themselves and survive (ie, the dead don’t vote) or have a loved one die or be hospitalized. On the other hand, something like 50% of the population will endure severe economic hardship due to the lockdowns.

          • GBJames
            Posted May 17, 2020 at 8:16 pm | Permalink

            They only need a parent or cousin or some friend at the local worshiping hut. The public is very fearful of returning too quickly to regular high-exposure life.

            Sure, there will still be cultists. But Republicans can not win based simply on the support of the cultists.

    • tomh
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

      Exactly what Eric Trump said on Fox News yesterday, it’s all a Democratic hoax.

      “They think they are taking away Donald Trump’s greatest tool, which is being able to go into an arena and fill it with 50,000 people every single time. You watch, they’ll milk it every single day between now and Nov. 3. And guess what, after Nov. 3 coronavirus will magically all of a sudden go away and disappear and everybody will be able to reopen.”
      “They tried to do it with the Russia thing, they tried to do it with the Ukraine scandal, they tried to do it with impeachment. Now they’re trying to do it with coronavirus.”

      • Posted May 17, 2020 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

        Right, I read about that. I sense an alignment behind this message. Eric Trump goes a bit far but others will deliver it better.

  16. Jon Gallant
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    If some red states reopen with enthusiasm and a lot of grandmas and grandpas are “gathered up”, as they say in the Southland, that could be rather helpful. In the meantime, here is a thought for our time:


  17. Matt
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

    These selfish dangerous idiots don’t care about the rest of us until they get sick, then they care very much about what we can do for them.

  18. Jenny Haniver
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

    I’d aver that no major faith tradition, be it Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism (and perhaps none, major or minor, including ‘spiritual’ traditions) is immune from that kind of magical thinking — from the Godhead to folk beliefs and practices, and New Age woo, it’s nothing but magical thinking, and Tony Spell is an exemplum of the Evangelical Christian variety.

    But one needn’t have a religious or spiritual excuse for such reckless hubris; plenty of people do for non-religious reasons or for no overt reason consider themselves immune to contracting COVID-1. Ultimately, this delusion of invincibility seems to me to stem from something much more basic, inherent to our species but expressed in different forms.

    • alexander
      Posted May 18, 2020 at 4:25 am | Permalink

      Trump seems to display this characteristic (belief in invincibility). He believes that frequent testing during the day will protect him from the virus. Well, this testing will protect the others, but once you are tested positive, you are toast.

  19. Roger
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 4:57 pm | Permalink

    He’s setting the bar impossibly high because heaven and hell only have things that ancient goatherds knew about for some reason.

  20. Roger
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 4:58 pm | Permalink

    Milk America Great Again

  21. Jenny Haniver
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 5:01 pm | Permalink


  22. Posted May 17, 2020 at 5:06 pm | Permalink

    My guess is that most of you have read this on the internet or seen it on YouTube, but:


    Some people are simply more creative than others in accomplishing tasks/goals. If I were still religious, I’d much rather be squirted with a water pistol in my car in a parking lot than attend church with a greedy leech who doesn’t care about my safety and who wants me to give him my government-given money. If there were a hell, it would be a good place for him.

    • Roger
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 5:14 pm | Permalink

      More like barking lot because clergy like barking a lot at people. They took a perfectly good parking lot and turned it into a barking lot. (Apologies to Joni Mitchell.)

  23. Posted May 17, 2020 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    There should be a penalty for stupidity. Why not let natural selection take its course?

    • GBJames
      Posted May 17, 2020 at 6:52 pm | Permalink

      Because innocent bystanders get infected too.

  24. Posted May 17, 2020 at 7:42 pm | Permalink

    How is it it’s HELL that gets the mention,
    any press is good press for the devil I say 😎
    Why not, there would be believers fornicating on the streets of heaven before I cower to there un godly demands… or whiskey flowing forth from the water fountains down the gold lined streets of heaven before…
    Reiterating the purity of heaven?
    Instead you get popsicles and ice skating not happening in hell.
    Temperatures will rise undoubtedly though if
    Covid -19 their gods message of the day comes a calling.

    • alexander
      Posted May 18, 2020 at 4:33 am | Permalink

      Hell is too hot for viruses! Good place to be..

      • Kahlil Jabroni
        Posted May 18, 2020 at 7:25 am | Permalink

        Heaven for the climate, Hell for the…climate.

  25. Mark R.
    Posted May 17, 2020 at 9:36 pm | Permalink

    Religion even makes the Covid-19 pandemic worse. Wow! Good job religion, keep up the great work! This dude’s a true sociopath…most of these money-grubbing pastors are.

  26. Hempenstein
    Posted May 18, 2020 at 6:10 am | Permalink

    Landon Spradlin II.

  27. Posted May 18, 2020 at 9:59 am | Permalink

    The aims – globally – were (1) to “flatten the curve” and (2) make sure health systems were not overwhelmed. Both of these are met. Even in US. Why not get back to work and play, responsibly?
    When did “find a cure” or “wipe out the virus” become the new Goals?
    I’m in Hong Kong where we were on the front line. We had “Lockdown Lite” and managed world lows in cases/million deaths/million. We never closed restaurants. Or banned outdoor activities. We never had any “Karens” and social distancing is left to individual responsibly. We went through SARS so know all about masks and disinfectants. That’s been key.
    We are now getting back to work and play.
    For all those here who would lock up people who “violate” lockdown, what are your alternatives? What are your new goals? When will they be met? (“Wipe our the virus” may never be met).

  28. Posted May 18, 2020 at 12:04 pm | Permalink

    To me, the dumbest, most pig-headed thing about this guy is he’s using this as “proof” of christian persecution. Other pastors have gone to virtual services, and this one has the capability to do so, but from the first moment decided to die on this hill.

    Some guys are so desperate to martyr themselves they’ll go for the dumbest of reasons… but you’re not supposed to volunteer others for sacrifice, too, idjit.

  29. Posted May 18, 2020 at 6:19 pm | Permalink

    Bananas. Just… bananas.

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