Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Establishment and Free Exercise Clauses Deck (10)
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Establishment Clause

Prohibits gov't from prefering one religion or over another


Where a government program prefers one religion or religious sect over others, strict scrutiny analysis will be applied 


When is the Lemon Test used?

Where the legislation or government program contains no religious or sect preference


What are the elements of the Lemon Test?

  1. the statute must have a secular legislative purpose;
  2. the principal or primary effect or purpose must neither advance nor inhibit religion; and

  3. the statute must not foster an excessive government entanglement with religion. 


  Religious Activities Conducted at Public Schools: 

religious activities conducted in public schools violate the Establishment Clause because their primary purpose is to promote religion 


Public School Curriculum: 

Anti-evolution laws prohibiting the teaching of Darwinian principles in public schools are unconstitutional 


tax deductions for Religious institutions:

SCOTUS has upheld the validity of a property tax exemption for religious institutions as the equivalent of exempting other charitable organizations 


*however, an exemption from sales and use taxes available only for the sale of religious magazines and books violates the Establishment Clause as an endorsement of religion. 


Government Aid to Religious Schools

  • Providing bus fare for both public and private (including some religious) schools has been found to be constitutional
  • State can provide money to both private and public schools for:
    • secular textbooks
    • standardized tests
    • lunch
    • library, media materials, and computers
    • interpreters for deaf students


Free Exercise Clause

  • A person’s religious beliefs are absolutely protected.

  • The government may not punish an individual by denying benefits or imposing burdens based on religious belief.