Would it allow for the provision of basic public services to religious organizations, even if the taxpayer makes no use of, or has no use for, that organization?
Must the Establishment Clause be used in the most restrictive ways possible, to insure the complete absence of religion in public life?
Part of the problem, I suspect, is that both sides in the cultural debates like to have their histories and their policies neat and tidy.
No reading of the Establishment Clause is going to solve our problems.
A reader doesn’t, however, need to search much to find what Berry has to say about abortion. In that essay Berry argues there should be no laws against abortion, and in general his essay cannot be said to be a defense of the “pro-life” position.
My guess is that Garner read only a small part of Berry’s works, but the gratuitous inclusion of the abortion reference raises the suspicion that writers for on abortion and the Establishment Clause of the Constitution.
highlight a common (mis)understanding concerning the politics of abortion, and in the process reveal much about the state of political disagreement, particularly as it involves the role of the Constitution in public life.
the Library of America’s release of the works of Wendell Berry.
Neither, for that matter, can the Greenhouse’s essay serves as a reminder that the law cannot function when individuals or groups see reality in such radically divergent ways. To begin with, stating that the Establishment Clause doesn’t justify referring to God’s will to deny rights is a straw man.
Commitment to the rule of law requires commitment to Constitutional principles, but under such serious disagreement about those principles the rule of law will devolve into mere coercion. She gives no indication of understanding the clause’s relationship to state establishments at the time of ratification, nor any sense of its relationship to the Free Exercise Clause.