Congressional Protection of Religious Liberty
Nova Publishers, 2003 - 82 páginas
It is widely believed that religious liberty is mainly protected by the independent judiciary, especially for religious denominations that represent a small minority. The view is that legislative bodies - operating by majority vote - cannot be expected to protect minority rights, and that judges have the independence and technical expertise to defend the constitutional rights of minorities. However, legislatures - at both state and national level - have done much to protect religious liberty, including the views of religious minorities. Even during the past half century, when the judicial record has measurably improved, individuals and private organisations, tend to turn to the elected officials for help, after being turned down by the courts. This book provides the reader with the means by which elected officials, especially members of Congress have protected religious liberty. the rights of the conscientious objectors and moves to more recent disputes, including compulsory flag salutes, religious apparel in the military, school prayer, Indian religious beliefs and various statutory exemptions adopted by Congress and state legislature to provide a sturdy defence to religious liberty.
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Página 4 - At the same time, the candid citizen must confess that if the policy of the government upon vital questions, affecting the whole people, is to be irrevocably fixed by decisions of the Supreme Court, the instant they are made, in ordinary litigation between parties in personal actions, the people will have ceased to be their own rulers, having to that extent practically resigned their government into the hands of that eminent tribunal.
Página 34 - It is neither sacrilegious nor antireligious to say that each separate government in this country should stay out of the business of writing or sanctioning official prayers and leave that purely religious function to the people themselves and to those the people choose to look to for religious guidance.
Página 34 - It has been argued that to apply the Constitution in such a way as to prohibit state laws respecting an establishment of religious services in public schools is to indicate a hostility toward religion or toward prayer. Nothing, of course, could be more wrong. The history of man is inseparable from the history of religion.
Página 33 - ... it is no part of the business of government to compose official prayers for any group of the American people to recite as a part of a religious program carried on by government.
Página 15 - ... religious sect or organization at present organized and existing and whose existing creed or principles forbid its members to participate in war in any form and whose religious convictions are against war or participation therein in accordance with the creed...
Página 8 - Great constitutional provisions must be administered with caution. Some play must be allowed for the joints of the machine, and it must be remembered that legislatures are ultimate guardians of the liberties and welfare of the people in quite as great a degree as the courts" (Missouri, Kansas & Texas Ry.
Página 33 - Almighty God, we acknowledge our dependence upon Thee, and we beg Thy blessings upon us, our parents, our teachers, and our country.
Página 12 - The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well armed and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country: but no person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms shall be compelled to render military service in person.
Página 71 - religion" includes all aspects of religious observance and practice, as well as belief, unless an employer demonstrates that he is unable to reasonably accommodate to an employee's or prospective employee's, religious observance or practice without undue hardship on the conduct of the employer's business.