Does Brown v. Bd. of Ed. "disfavor a religion"?
Robert Justin Lipkin
RJLipkin at AOL.COM
Thu Oct 3 07:17:48 PDT 2002
In a message dated 10/2/2002 1:22:52 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
mnewsom at LAW.HOWARD.EDU writes:
> if we want to understand American church-state law, we have to understand
> the consensus as it has changed and developed over time, and we also need
> to explore the racial dimensions of that consensus.
If this argument means that consensus (traditions of one sort or
another) provides the context for (raising and for conceivably) resolving
questions in church-state law (in my view in any domain involving principles
of practical reasoning), but only the first step in understanding that
domain, I think the argument is intrinsically interesting and important. The
problem is that this consensus (or tradition) is probably, as W. B. Gallie
and others have put it, "essentially contested," or in perhaps more familiar
terms, subject to interpretation, and so I'd be skeptical about regarding it
as fixed or as representing a neutral touchstone for determining the precise
character of church-state law.
In my view, race is central for understanding almost any issue in
American constitutional law and politics.
I am unfamiliar with Herberg's work and therefore I cannot offer an
opinion concerning his views.
Widener University School of Law
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
More information about the Religionlaw