Atheism & the Law

Legal issues involving atheism, agnosticism, and freethinking, including discussion of the constitutionality of laws or policies that violate the 1st Amendment, how atheism affects marriage and divorce, and anything else of a legal nature.

Members: 41
Latest Activity: May 1

Discussion Forum

Rand Paul and Chris Christie Join the Anti-vaxer Crazy Train

Started by Bertold Brautigan. Last reply by Pat Feb 4. 5 Replies

It appears that anyone anticipating that the upcoming Republican primary is going to make the last one seem sane in contrast is not in for a disappointment. Mr. Pierce, as is his wont,…Continue

Hobby Lobby: 0, Client: Won

Started by James M. Martin Dec 30, 2014. 0 Replies

I hesitated to comment on this lest you think I am crowing about a courtroom victory I had as a criminal defense attorney involving Hobby Lobby as the complainant, but I finally gave in, so here it…Continue

Seven States still Ban Atheists from Public Office

Started by Bertold Brautigan. Last reply by Bertold Brautigan Dec 8, 2014. 6 Replies


What I Learned in My Law School Seminar on Jurisprudence

Started by James M. Martin. Last reply by James M. Martin Oct 21, 2014. 3 Replies

My jurisprudence professor in law school was Jesuit-trained and metriculated in a succession of Roman Catholic institutions of higher learning. Few law students took the seminar, and some who signed…Continue

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Comment by Bertold Brautigan on May 1, 2015 at 11:54pm

Satanists Seize On Hobby Lobby To Test The Limit Of Religious Freedom

The Satanic Temple, a faith community that ascribes to seven central tenets that track closely with humanism, is seeking a religious exemption from Missouri’s 72-hour abortion waiting period on the grounds that the law violates their sincerely held beliefs about bodily autonomy.

. . . Satanic Temple leaders set up a crowdfunding site to raise money to help Mary cover the expenses associated with her abortion procedure. And they’re also arguing that, based on their community’s religious tenets — which stipulate that “one’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone” and “we should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit our beliefs” — Mary should be able to get a faith-based exemption to the state’s 72-hour waiting period.

. . . 

As part of that campaign, the Satanic Temple makes the religious case against abortion restrictions that are based on junk science and medical misinformation — and fights for the right to use faith-based arguments to strengthen, rather than weaken, access to reproductive health care.

“While religio-conservative views seek to undermine abortion rights, they have also steadily worked to define ‘religious liberty’ to be understood in terms of reserving the the right to deny contraceptives and oppose rational family planning practices. In fact, religious liberty works the other way, too,” Lucien Greaves, the head of The Satanic Temple, said in a statement provided to the Friendly Atheist blog.

Comment by sk8eycat on February 2, 2015 at 4:03pm

How do we fix THIS?

Comment by sk8eycat on December 15, 2014 at 6:12am

Are the various Washington DC Mall museums government property or private?  I have seen several YouTube videos of the USAF orchestra and choir playing and singing blatantly religious xmas songs there from the past 10 days.  ("Whose Child is THIS?"  Joseph's or the Wholly Goat's?) Can they do that? legally?

Comment by James M. Martin on June 28, 2012 at 5:08pm
Those old scales of justice are coming slowly back into balance: if it doesn't entirely make up for Bush v. Gore and Citizens United, the AHA decision suggests that not all the Scalito crowd are knee-jerk conservatives. The surprising thing is that Roberts looked to the tax clause and not the commerce clause for constitutionality. The question now is, will the Right argue taxes are subject to repeal, so the mandate could be gutted by Congress.
Comment by James M. Martin on May 7, 2012 at 6:34pm

Thanks, Steph.  I blog here now and then.  I am becoming acutely aware of the role religion plays in our court system.

Comment by Steph S. on May 7, 2012 at 12:57am
Hi James! I just found your group here! Looks great! I can't wait to get caught up on the discussions.
Comment by James M. Martin on January 8, 2011 at 5:39pm
Well, now, let's say Percy Shelley had contested in court his being disowned by his religious father, wouldn't his atheism have become an issue?  I rather doubt the bench would allow in such evidence in this day and age, but we have a judge a couple of counties away who keeps a "God" slogan next to the American flag.  I think it references the commandment about bearing false witness.  As if we had to be religious to avoid that!  No, I think atheist issues will grow in importance in jurisprudence of the 21st century.  I hope it does.

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