No subject

James Oleske oleske.1 at OSU.EDU
Tue Feb 29 10:56:43 PST 2000

Douglas Laycock wrote:

"And whether or not there is hostility to religion, there is hostility to
exemptions. Religion is increasingly thought to be unimportant, nothing
special, and therefore subject to override by any countervailing rule."

How does this square with the fact that Congress nearly unanimously adopted
RFRA in 1993 and the House passed RPLA in 1999?  Moreover, as I recall,
even the dissenters in the House Judiciary Report on RPLA spoke in favor of
religious exemptions in general; they just thought RPLA was problematic for
other reasons (i.e. it did not protect other civil rights adequately; it
was constitutionally dubious).  Plus, several states have enacted their own
RFRAs, and numerous others have rejected Smith as a matter of state
constitutional law.  Seems more like an embrace of exemptions than hostility.

As for members of the religious right, they have taken very high-profile
positions on hot-button political issues over the past 15 years and, not
surprisingly, they have made enemies as a result.  However, I am not
convinced that hostility towards the religious right has resulted in an
increase in hostility  towards religious groups who have not sought out
such attention in the political arena.

- Jim Oleske
Ohio State University College of Law

P.S. I subscribe to the digest form of the list, so please accept my
apologies if these points were already covered in earlier posts.

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