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God vs. the Gavel Religion and the Rule of Law

ISBN-10: 0521703387
ISBN-13: 9780521703383
Edition: 2007
List price: $28.99
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Description: God vs. the Gavel challenges the pervasive assumption that all religious conduct deserves constitutional protection. While religious conduct provides many benefits to society, it is not always benign. The thesis of the book is that anyone who harms  More...

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Book details

List price: $28.99
Copyright year: 2007
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 9/17/2007
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 430
Size: 5.50" wide x 8.50" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.144
Language: English

God vs. the Gavel challenges the pervasive assumption that all religious conduct deserves constitutional protection. While religious conduct provides many benefits to society, it is not always benign. The thesis of the book is that anyone who harms another person should be governed by the laws that govern everyone else - and truth be told, religion is capable of great harm. This may not sound like a radical proposition, but it has been under assault since the 1960s. The majority of academics and many religious organisations would construct a fortress around religious conduct that would make it extremely difficult to prosecute child abuse by clergy, medical neglect of children by faith-healers, and other socially unacceptable behaviours. This book intends to change the course of the public debate over religion by bringing to the public's attention the tactics of religious entities to avoid the law and therefore harm others.

Marci A. Hamilton is the leading national expert on religious liberty under the First Amendment and the new extreme religious liberty statutes, including RFRA, state RFRAs, and RFRA's successor, the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA). She works for the protection of children, women, and the vulnerable from the harm that religious actors can do.

Why the Law Must Govern Religious Entities
The problem
Children
Marriage
Religious land use and residential neighborhoods
Schools
The prisons and the military
Discrimination
The History and Doctrine Behind the Rule that Subjects Religious Entities to Duly Enacted Laws
Boerne v. Flores: the case that fully restored the rule of law for religious entities
The decline of the special treatment of religious entities and the rise of the no-harm rule
The path to the public good

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