FW: descriptive scholarly accounts of religious identityandjudicial behav...

Richard Dougherty doughr at udallas.edu
Sat Apr 24 08:32:34 PDT 2010


My apologies for getting anyone exercised.  And since the question is only con-law "related," I will only suggest that if you want examples of secularists who favor government support of religion over non-religion you just have to read around a bit -- perhaps even to posts to this list.  (I realize you probably can get internet access in an asylum, but I haven't researched it.)   And yes, I have considered that the government's support of religion (I didn't say "one religion") won't be of my religion; never has been, doubt it ever will be.  (I did say this was not my view.)  I have enough trouble getting my own church to support my religion!
To Prof. Finkleman's comparison of the US to Europe, there are of course lots of reasons why church attendance is higher in Americans than in Europe, and it is a worthy topic, but that takes us too far away from conlaw.  Our question, it seems to me, is what the law says about religion.
All the best,
Richard Dougherty
-----Original Message-----
From: "Robert Sheridan" <rs at robertsheridan.com>
Sent 4/24/2010 12:32:37 AM
To: "Richard Dougherty" <doughr at udallas.edu>
Cc: "finkelman, paul" <paul.finkelman at albanylaw.edu>, "Hamilton02 at aol.com" <Hamilton02 at aol.com>, "nebraskalawprof at yahoo.com" <nebraskalawprof at yahoo.com>, "conlawprof at lists.ucla.edu" <conlawprof at lists.ucla.edu>
Subject: Re: FW: descriptive scholarly accounts of religious identityandjudicial behav...Lunacy.  Is that a Conlaw word?  Name one secularist not wearing a
straightjacket who says this.
My government is neither hostile nor indifferent to religion.  It
provides a sheltered framework in which all religions can do their
thing.  We have new ones popping up all the time, in fact, from the
Universalist Life Church (marriages) to the Rev. Moon's whatever you
call it.  And the Krishna folk who beg at airports. And storefronts.  We
love religion.  That's why we have so many of them.  We have people who
believe in one God, three-in-one Gods, multiple gods, no gods,
you-name-it, we've got it.  How can it be said that my government is
either hostile or indifferent to religion?  It may not care for yours in
particular, but what makes you think that yours is the answer for the
rest of us, or has your god been talking quietly to you?
But maybe you're right and we would be better off with a government that
favors one religion over all the rest.  However, it's going to be my
religion, not yours.  That okay with you?  You thought of that, right?
rs
Richard Dougherty wrote:
> An excellent question.  I think one answer that many people give (not
> my answer) is that a government that is indifferent or hostile to
> religion fosters a society which is worse than one that favors it.
> And that argument has been made by many secularists as well as believers.
>
> Richard J. Dougherty
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: "Finkelman, Paul <paul.finkelman at albanylaw.edu>"
> <Paul.Finkelman at albanylaw.edu>
> Sent 4/23/2010 11:51:00 PM
> To: "Hamilton02 at aol.com" <Hamilton02 at aol.com>,
> "nebraskalawprof at yahoo.com" <nebraskalawprof at yahoo.com>,
> "conlawprof at lists.ucla.edu" <conlawprof at lists.ucla.edu>
> Subject: RE: FW: descriptive scholarly accounts of religious
> identityandjudicial behav...
>
> To Rick's comment below, we might respond:  "No one's liberty is
> harmed by remoing a religous display from public property.  If you
> want the monument then put it up on your property; you have liberty to
> do that.  In fact, Rick, my liberty is harmed when you take my tax
> dollars and the political power of my country, and use it to support
> /anyone's/ religion, whether it is yours or mine.  BUt, if you put the
> monument on your land than it affects no one's liberty.  I am simply
> don't comprehend the argument that /your/ religious liberty depends on
> using public land and public money to promote your faith.  This is
> precisely what the First Amendment is designed to prevent.
>
> More to the point, why would anyone who takes religion seriously
> /want/ to have the government putting up religious monuments?  Do you
> want your religous values subject to who wins an election?
>
>
> *************************************************
> Paul Finkelman, Ph.D.
> President William McKinley Distinguished Professor of Law
> Albany Law School
> 80 New Scotland Avenue
> Albany, NY 12208
>
> 518-445-3386 (p)
> 518-445-3363 (f)
>
> paul.finkelman at albanylaw.edu <mailto:paul.finkelman at albanylaw.edu>
> www.paulfinkelman.com <http://www.paulfinkelman.com/>
> *************************************************
>
>
>
>     No one's liberty is harmed by a passive religious display
>
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