Kirk Cameron organizes caroling protests amid California's Covid-19 surge
Posted December 23, 2020 11:56 a.m. EST
CNN — Actor Kirk Cameron is facing criticism for organizing at least two events in Southern California in recent weeks, where dozens of mask-less people stood shoulder-to-shoulder to sing Christmas carols in protest of state and local stay-at-home mandates.
"I'm getting ready to go out in 38 minutes, it's T-38 minutes for our Christmas caroling peaceful protest," Cameron said in an Instagram post in advance of an event held in the parking lot of The Oaks mall in Thousand Oaks, California. "We are going to be celebrating our God-given liberties, our constitutionally protected rights at this time at Christmas to sing Christmas songs to gather, to assemble, and to sing about the birth of our savior."
The Oaks mall posted a statement to Twitter Tuesday, "We do not condone this irresponsible -- yet constitutionally protected -- peaceful protest event planned. We share your concern and have notified the Sheriff's office. As well, we have reached out to the event planner to ask that they do not use The Oaks as their venue."
The mall is located in Ventura County, part of the Southern California Region, a group of counties under a state-mandated stay-home order triggered by low ICU capacity. Gatherings are prohibited with the exception of worship and political expression. The state reports over 1.9 million cases and continues to surge, reporting tens of thousands of new cases daily.
Cameron, best known for his role as Mike Seaver on the long-running ABC sitcom "Growing Pains," connected his efforts to Sing it Louder USA.
"Feel like you're done with all the mandates telling you how many people you can have in your home or how you're supposed to eat or that you cannot sing?" said Houston pastor Steve Riggle on the group's website, which encourages people to gather and sing as their form of protest against government "tyrants who are attempting to control our lives."
Last week, Cameron's "Growing Pains" costar and on-screen sister, actress Tracey Gold expressed her concern by referencing their show characters in a tweet.
"Checking in with my dear brother Mike. @ KirkCameron As your more intelligent sister I want you to know that I disapprove. I'm worried about you brother AND your family. Wear a mask. Stay home. Sing later."