Richard Epstein describes the dramatic failure of the federal government’s attempts to balance anti-discrimination laws against religious liberty protections.

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Published in: Culture, History

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  1. Merrijane Inactive
    Merrijane
    @Merrijane

    This is rapidly becoming one of my favorite podcasts. I love absorbing Epstein’s flood of words. As a Mormon, it’s not against my religious beliefs to sell goods or services for a gay wedding even though my church doesn’t support or recognize gay marriage. But to me that’s beside the point. These cases chip away at religious liberty, gradually constricting religious speech and practice, until one day I will be affected directly. Even if it doesn’t circumscribe belief and worship, it will likely attempt to damage any organized religion’s ability to perform charitable works as well as shame members to discourage them from being open about their beliefs. It’s bad enough when the popular culture does that—the government should not add injury to insult. I read that Russia recently passed a law that prohibits “evangelizing” anywhere except within a licensed church building by licensed individuals. That means not by lay members, even in their own homes! It’s supposed to stop Islamic radicalization, but it’s already been much more insidious than that in practice. I fear some activists in this country would like to eventually institute such a law if they could get away with it.

    • #1
  2. Mike Rapkoch Moderator
    Mike Rapkoch
    @MikeRapkoch

    Merrijane:This is rapidly becoming one of my favorite podcasts. I love absorbing Epstein’s flood of words. As a Mormon, it’s not against my religious beliefs to sell goods or services for a gay wedding even though my church doesn’t support or recognize gay marriage. But to me that’s beside the point. These cases chip away at religious liberty, gradually constricting religious speech and practice, until one day I will be affected directly. Even if it doesn’t circumscribe belief and worship, it will likely attempt to damage any organized religion’s ability to perform charitable works as well as shame members to discourage them from being open about their beliefs. It’s bad enough when the popular culture does that—the government should not add injury to insult. I read that Russia recently passed a law that prohibits “evangelizing” anywhere except within a licensed church building by licensed individuals. That means not by lay members, even in their own homes! It’s supposed to stop Islamic radicalization, but it’s already been much more insidious than that in practice. I fear some activists in this country would like to eventually institute such a law if they could get away with it.

    Speaking as a lawyer I cam tell you that Professor Epstein is brilliant and perhaps the best lawyer in America.

    • #2