Amendment I. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.
Except that you left off more than 1/2 of the Amendment - yes I agree.
Seems pretty clear cut to me. I want my doctors' decisions based upon my health and not their religious beliefs.
I have to question the motives of anyone who proclaims a set of beliefs, then acts in ways that contradict those beliefs, especially for expediency. Quite frankly it aggravates me.
Phil, What medical decision has a Dr. made considering your health that was based on his religious belief. (This isn't a slam. I'm just curious what it could be. I've had more than my fair share of Dr. visits and have never experienced this.)
To the best of my knowledge that has never happened to me.
More to the point have you ever asked for service that might offend a doctor's morals? An abortion? A sex change? Circumcise your daughter?
Local ob-gyn wouldn't perform abortions - his right - but he did point the person to those who did. That is what, to me, freedom is about.
No. No. No, not yet. No.
Interesting question. I absolutely agree with the establishment clause, but to be frank, I haven't completely grappled with the free exercise clause such that I can give an unequivocal response. Various religions have practices that are opposed by and/or repugnant to others, and some that are currently illegal under our laws: polygamy; child brides; male and female genital mutilation; animal sacrifice (human?); honor killings; refusal of medical treatment, goverment schooling, military service, and business services; and probably countless other things that I have neglected to mention, in addition to any not yet established.
I agree. Which is why any law that 'respects' (or disrespects) any religion should not be allowed.
Laws should be about protecting citizen and the civil order, regardless of what any religion preaches. We should not allow religious practices that conflict with established civil laws.
"Established civil laws" change. "Established" anything is subject to change. Sometimes with good reason, often not.
Btw, the Constitution never mentions "respecting" religion.
See Bud's top comment. That is exactly what it says. Respecting.
"Respecting" an establishment of...means "regarding" an establishment of...it does not in any way, shape, or form depict respect being shown in any way. Pretending it does is simply dishonest, Vic. I honestly thought better of you. SMH
Think what you want Bozette.
If there is a law that says I can exercise religion - that is a law regarding religion. If there is a law that says I have a right to not have a religion, that is a law regarding religion.
Any laws mentioning religion should be off limits. Regarding, respecting or whatever.
So you oppose the various 'religious freedom' laws states have been passing? In theory, I would agree. They should be completely unnecessary. Were it not for many of those "established civil laws" you mentioned, most of which I believe to be unconstitutional, they would be unnecessary. But that brings up another constitutional consideration, namely that our Constitution is a limitation on the federal government, not states. It has only been through blatantly unconstitutional laws, court rulings, and SCOTUS "interpretations" (and I use that word very, very loosely) that most of our current laws exist.
Our Constitution has been bastardized, slowly but surely, from the very beginning of our nation's existence. The rate of bastardization has steadily increased over time until we are now at the point of barely paying it lip service, despite our constant debates over it, both in the halls of government and in the "public square".
I know this would be news to most Americans, which merely showcases the complete failure of our government education system, but I would think you might have a better grasp on our history. All thirteen colonies provided some form of support for churches, this continued after statehood. Indeed eight of the original states had official state religions. This was not unconstitutional, nor was it considered so until after the 14th Amendment. Jefferson's famous, or infamous, statement regarding the separation of church and state, too, has been bastardized, as he himself proved by attending church services in the House of Representatives beginning but two days after penning that line.
So, yes, I would agree that there should be no laws, whatsoever, regarding religion...nor should there be any laws infringing upon the freedoms of private individuals, businesses, schools, churches, and/or organizations that would make them necessary.
We agree that morality cannot be legislated. It is an exercise in futility. We tried it and it did not work, it was, in fact, an utter failure that eventually served to promote immorality. And now the pendulum is swinging in the opposite direction, governments are now trying to promote "tolerance" through "social justice" laws. And, as with all things government, they are going too far. The results will, eventually, prove to be the opposite of the stated goal(s). I am seeing this play out in our society today. And while the citizens of European countries, Canada, and Australia were far more accepting of such measures than Americans, I am seeing a small, but growing, pushback arising in those countries, as well.
Interesting times ahead.
Sorry if I implied that local laws cannot exist. I am only concerned here with the federal government's imposition of its moral 'high ground ' on its citizenry.
Admittedly, as I don't TV and largely boycott the MSM, I may have missed some news item claiming the sky is falling...is there some proposed or existing federal law or dastardly action/statement by Trump in particular that prompted your question?
No "sky is falling" scenario.
Just thinking about it in the context of recent debates regarding the rights of medical workers to determine who they will (or will not) treat based on their (medical workers) personal religious beliefs.
I think some people were concerned, mostly about abortions but also, about:
refusing to treat transgender folks,
refusing to give immunizations,
ignoring end-of-life directives,
declining to assist on holy days,
and so on
Just looking for some others to share their thoughts, and they did, so thank you.
Gotcha, I had actually missed that as my radar has been down the past few days.
Specifically, in that context I believe if you do not wish to treat someone, whatever your reasons:
You should have right of refusal if you are in private practice.
If you are an employee, your employer determines what services they provide. It is up to you to know what is included in your job duties and expected of you. If you have any specific objections, it should be discussed with the employer prior to accepting the position. If the employer is willing to accommodate you, fine...if not, don't take the job.
Regarding emergency care, any facility funded with taxpayer monies should not be allowed to refuse services to anyone. Private facilities should have that option, but I don't suppose that precludes a civil lawsuit being filed and whether it would be successful or not is both a crapshoot and expensive either way, so logically should factor into the facilities policies. That may also have repercussions on the success or failure of the business. Employees of either are covered above.
To my mind, anyone who refuses emergency services to anyone for any reason is flat out a piece of shit. Just sayin'.
When it comes to mental health treatment, excepting emergency situations, I cannot imagine why anyone would wish to use the force of law to demand treatment from someone who has no desire to treat them, particularly if that is because the practitioner is opposed to or judgemental of their lifestyle, beliefs, or past choices. As with the gays who wished to force bakeries and photographers to provide services, were it me, I would expect a possibility of some poor service, such as less-than-pristine (shall we say) food or "Oops, my camera failed and you have no pictures." Why anyone would wish to entrust their mental health care to someone who is repulsed by or judgemental of them is beyond my understanding.
We can separate religion from our government, as it should be.
What is to be done when the religion is the governing body?
Isn't that the purpose of our Constitution, to limit the rights of the government, regardless of who is in charge?
So we need to hold the government accountable to abiding the Constitution. We should defend the rights of others, regardless of who they are.
We should, but we don't...on both counts.
I can think of no laws that have established a particular religion in this country. Is there a "State" religion that has been established that says it is against the law to be Catholic, or Buddhist, or even Muslim that I missed somewhere? Is there a law that says it is a requirement to be muslim? Is there a law that says everyone must be Christian? Not that I can think of.
The law states that a person CAN be Christian, or Buddhist, or whatever religion they want to be.
Laws are supposed to be created to protect society. They are supposed to be a reflection on what society deems acceptable and unacceptable. It doesn't matter if those laws happen to parallel a belief system of a religion. The religion itself is still not law. In Christian religion, there is a commandment against stealing. Is there any civilized society that does not have a "law" against stealing? Does that make the law invalid, and the people who created that law, going against the Constitution because it was something they were taught was wrong? No. The law is simply a reflection of what society believes must be in place to protect itself from chaos.
respecting an establishment
Key word here is "respecting"
Congress should do nothing. It should neither discourage nor encourage religion. Religion should not be in any law or policy. Any policy that says it is "OK" to have religion is "respecting" religion.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion.
Just my opinion.
What law is out there demanding anyone respect Christianity Vic? Does one exist?
You are very vocal about you not liking Christians. Has anyone said you were breaking the law by your beliefs?
Do you agree that hatred and verbal attacks of islam and muslims should not be a crime then? That there should not be any laws that are considered a hate crime against muslims? (remember that muslims are NOT a "race") Or do you support an "exception" for muslims?
You don't get to pick and choose which religions you demand people "respect".
What you want Vic, is not freedom of religion, but freedom "from" others being able to have and believe the way they want. You want there to be no recognized religion other than Atheism, which is your religion. Many other communists and socialists think that way as well.
There should be no laws saying, for example:
Muslims can practice their religion in public.
Just as there should be no laws that says they cannot practice their religion in public.
There should be no law that says a restaurant cannot serve pork because it offends the Jewish people; and their should not be any laws that say you don't have to serve gays if your religion prohibits you from that.
There should be no law that says you cannot serve alcohol on Sundays, and no law that says you have to serve it on Sundays.
There should be no law protecting you from being fired if you don't want to perform your job because you think it is immoral - get another job if it is immoral; and no law saying you have to perform a job you don't want to perform.
No laws respecting or prohibiting the free exercise of religion. No laws.
You really are not that consistent.
You say that there should be no laws that say people cannot practice their beliefs in public, yet you also say that a person who owns an establishment cannot refuse to do something they believe is immoral. Isn’t that practicing their belief in public? (Not only public, but private since it’s on their property.)
You say there should be no laws about people practicing their beliefs in public yet you are for laws that prevent students from praying in school. (Schools are public Vic, not private) From earlier discussions, you have no problem with muslins blocking traffic or sidewalks for their daily prayers, but do you support congregations of Christians doing the same thing on ANY public property? I doubt it.
As to serving alcohol on Sundays, why shouldn’t there be a law against it, if that is what the community wants? Laws are generally directed and created by the will of the people/community Vic, not necessary what Vic wants. Don’t like the law? Move to an area and population that is in agreement with you. Why change a law that everyone else wants because you don’t like it? In communities where the public wants alcohol sold on Sunday, it is. There are laws against selling alcohol after 1 a.m.. There are laws against selling alcohol within so many feet of a school. There are laws against selling alcohol to minors. There are laws against selling alcohol to someone who is drunk. There are many alcohol laws. Does that mean they are religious laws? Not at all. Not all religions even have their “Holy Day”, on Sunday Vic. Are there any laws that prohibit selling alcohol on Saturdays? I can’t think of a large restaurant that doesn’t sell alcohol on Sunday. Let’s face it, you are simply against laws. Laws are generally created in response to events, not because some religion is directing elected officials to do it. Haven’t you said that religion and those who believe in God are now in the smaller minority? If that’s true, why do these laws you hate, still exist?
Why shouldn’t a business owner be allowed to choose who to serve, for whatever reason they choose? It’s their business, their property and their beliefs. Were you outraged when an atheist owned restaurant kicked out a group of Christians? I doubt it. Have you been outraged when a business refused to serve Jews, or other religions? I doubt it.
You have this big chip on your shoulder against Christians and attribute everything you don’t like and every law you don’t like, to them.
There should be no laws that say people cannot practice their beliefs in public, and there should be no laws that say a person who owns an establishment cannot refuse to do something they believe is immoral.
There should be no laws about people practicing their beliefs in public. There should be no laws that prevent students from praying in school. and certainly no laws that require it!
I have a problem with either group (Christian or Muslim) blocking traffic or sidewalks for their daily prayers, but I do not support any law allowing it or preventing it.
As to serving alcohol on Sundays, why shouldn’t there be a law against it, if that is what the community wants? Because that would be a law respecting religion. Just like I do not support any laws that limit access to firearms - they right shall not be infringed.
Laws are generally directed and created by the will of the people/community Vic, not necessary what Vic wants. Generally, but there are the "Bill of Rights" they should prevent certain laws - like those we are discussing.
I don't have a problem with laws that are based on civil concerns, my problem is with laws based on religious belief - laws against selling alcohol after 1 a.m., selling alcohol within so many feet of a school, to minors. drunks, none are based on religion, but not alchol on Sunday is. Not all religions even have their “Holy Day”, on Sunday - but Christians do, why not prohibit the sale on Wednesday? Because that is not a sabbath for any religion that I know of.
You are right, I am simply against laws. Laws that violate our rights to speech, guns, freedom from religion, freedom from search, etc.
I never said that religion and those who believe in God are now in the smaller minority? Contrary I suspect that most people are religious.
Why shouldn’t a business owner be allowed to choose who to serve, for whatever reason they choose? They should! But there should not be a law respecting their right to do so for religious reasons. It’s their business, their property - their beliefs are irrelevant as far as the constitution is concerned.
I was not outraged when anyone did anything.
You have this big chip on your shoulder against Christians and attribute everything you don’t like and every law you don’t like, to them. That's just bull. I attribute everything I don't like to a violation of the Bill of Rights, and to people who want to legislate morality.
Vic I would be very upset if any group is blocking the path I want to walk. Those jerks block parking lots or paths often protesting abortions, They are mean to anyone trying to get around the area and that should not be allowed. So what if a bakery rents space in the same mall as a family planning clinic. I go to the bakery not the clinic but they still act horrible toward me and everyone else .
A public place is for the public a church is for religion.
Not for me. It opens the door for erosion of the Bill of Rights.
JJim, I agree with your thinking. But how will anyone know your religion if you just mind your own business?
Lorraine, They won't and they don't. What happens when anyone opposes some far left agenda. They claim it is because of someones religious beliefs, even if they are clueless what, if any, someones beliefs are. If I claim to be against abortion, many will automatically assume it's because I am religious, because if I wasn't religious, it would go against the very core of their thinking, that only someone with religious beliefs would oppose them.
The other side of the coin Lorraine is, why should a person who has religious convictions be silent? Are those with atheist beliefs quiet? Those with atheist beliefs do a lot to promote passage of laws they want, and try to prevent or remove laws their beliefs don't agree with. Atheists are promoting their "religion" every day, and very vocally. They claim it isn't a religion but it is. All a religion is, is a belief in something.
OK I see your point.
"No laws respecting or prohibiting the free exercise of religion. No laws."
Nonsense, Vic. For example, animal cruelty laws restrict the degree to which religious animal sacrifices can be practiced.
Or are you a member of the Church of Lukumi Babalu Aye, perchance?
“ Thus the Amendment embraces two concepts,--freedom to believe and freedom to act. The first is absolute but, in the nature of things, the second cannot be. Conduct remains subject to regulation for the protection of society.”
that is bad, no animals should be sacrificed in a decent religion. But probably no worse than killing it for dinner. Poor animals, it is monday so I will have meatless chillie once again.
Evidently in many cases, this "religion" doesn't even eat the animals, leaving the carcasses in public places for their gods to eat.
"In Springhill, a box containing a decapitated pig and two decapitated pigeons is discovered in a residential neighborhood. In Norfolk, cow tongues hang from trees, and a disemboweled lamb is found on a public street. In Philadelphia, park workers increasingly find themselves cleaning up the carcasses of decapitated animals left in the public parks.  Every morning in Miami, city workers clear the county courthouse steps of animal carcasses left the night before.  Nearby, decapitated chickens frequently line the banks of the Miami River.  All these animals have been sacrificed, their carcasses left as offerings to Santerían deities, called Orishas."
Just because it is, doesn't mean it should be.
So you would be ok with not enforcing animal cruelty laws if, say, a living sacrificial animal were thrown into a fire as part of a religious ritual?
No. I would personally not be OK with that, however I would say that Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof. Oh, I already said that.
Congress is free to write laws regarding animal cruelty, they are not free to right laws against religious practices.
If an individuals religious practices are in conflict with civil laws then they are a criminal and should be prosecuted.
It's a fine line to toe.
You seem to be contradicting yourself. With one breath, you said, "Just because it is, doesn't mean it should be," and then with the next, you said you agreed with that's how it should be.
And then you threw in a straw man to boot. Of course no laws are passed specifically singling out a religious practice in so many words; they are always couched in general terms. If you had read my reference, you would have learned that the arguments against ostensibly general laws that impact religious practices center on the degree of impact, as compared to the public at large, and what the intent of the framers of the law was, regardless of the language in which the law was couched. Successful challenges to such laws occurred when the plaintiffs could show that the intent and application of the law was not neutral.
It is only a contradiction if your are looking for a contradiction. I did not write the first amendment but it seems clear to me that no law means no law.
Is this the same Vic that not so long ago was regaling me about Goedel's theorem?
Nope. Different Vic.
Oh, yeah... that one ran away, as usual.
I believe "respecting", in this case, is used as an equivalent to regarding or relating to.
Should there be laws against certain religions or religious beliefs?
VicZinc obviously created this poll to initiate a controversial discussion. He also deliberately ignored the definition of the word "respecting" which is in the Constitution text. The sentence in the Constitution could have been worded "Congess shall make no law with respect to an establishment of religion", which is the most common way that word is used in English sentences today. Or the word "respecting" could have been replaced with "regarding" and the sentence would have the same meaning which the Founders had intended. So with that unnecessary clarification, I totally agree with the statement that Congress shall make NO LAW period regarding an establishment of religion!
Someone needs to make laws. Especially against this muslim takeover bid.
Lorraine, but if that happened, it would mean common sense prevailed. Some wouldn't stand for that.
You can order a prime filet of beef at McDonalds, but you won't get served one.
And it is not about freedom of or from religion - it is about what congress can and cannot make laws regarding. They cannot make laws regarding religion - of or for religion, no laws regarding religion, none at all.
Don't care much for assholes.
Oh sorry I forgot and thought the majority ruled. We need to pass new laws while we are still a majority