Religion and the Constitution, Volume 2: Establishment and Fairness

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Princeton University Press, May 19, 2008 - Law - 496 pages

Balancing respect for religious conviction and the values of liberal democracy is a daunting challenge for judges and lawmakers, particularly when religious groups seek exemption from laws that govern others. Should students in public schools be allowed to organize devotional Bible readings and prayers on school property? Does reciting "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance establish a preferred religion? What does the Constitution have to say about displays of religious symbols and messages on public property? Religion and the Constitution presents a new framework for addressing these and other controversial questions that involve competing demands of fairness, liberty, and constitutional validity.


In this second of two major volumes on the intersection of constitutional and religious issues in the United States, Kent Greenawalt focuses on the Constitution's Establishment Clause, which forbids government from favoring one religion over another, or religion over secularism. The author begins with a history of the clause, its underlying principles, and the Supreme Court's main decisions on establishment, and proceeds to consider specific controversies. Taking a contextual approach, Greenawalt argues that the state's treatment of religion cannot be reduced to a single formula.


Calling throughout for acknowledgment of the way religion gives meaning to people's lives, Religion and the Constitution aims to accommodate the maximum expression of religious conviction that is consistent with a commitment to fairness and the public welfare.

 

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Contents

Introduction
1
History
18
The Development of Doctrine and Its Significance
40
Government Aid to Religion and Promulgating Religious Doctrine
53
Religious Words and Symbols in Public Places
69
Mild Endorsements and Promotions
91
Public Schools Devotions
103
Public Schools Teaching about Religion
122
Tax Exemptions and Deductions
279
Religion and the Exemption Strategy
298
Limits of Accommodation
336
Financial Support to Religious Institutions
352
Aid to Religious Schools
385
Religion Clause Skepticism
433
Alternative Approaches
451
Justifications for the Religion Clauses
480

Public Schools Teaching Whose Content Rests on Religious Views
136
Establishment Clause Tests and Standards
157
Equal Facilities and Freedom of Speech
194
Chaplains in the Military and in Prison
207
Religious Groups Exercising Government Power
221
Religious Law and Civil Law Using Secular Law to Assure Observance of Practices with Religious Significance
240
Religiously Based Judgments and Religious Discourse in Public Life
497
Legal Enforcement of ReligionBased Morality
525
Conclusion
538
Index
545
Copyright

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About the author (2008)

Kent Greenawalt is University Professor at Columbia University, teaching in the law school, and a former Deputy Solicitor General of the United States. His books include Does God Belong in Public Schools? and Fighting Words (both Princeton), as well as Conflicts of Law and Morality and Religious Convictions and Political Choice.

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