How Does the Constitution Protect Religious Freedom?

By Robert A. Goldwin; Art Kaufman | Go to book overview

Preface

In 1785, before the Philadelphia Convention met to draft the Constitution of the United States, James Madison wrote and distributed to his fellow Virginians "A Memorial and Remonstrance against Religious Assessments" (reproduced in the appendix to this volume), which included this statement on the relationship between church and state: "The Religion . . . of every man must be left to the conviction and conscience of every man; and it is the right of every man to exercise it as these may dictate."

Few if any Americans today would quarrel with this statement of principle or the sentiment it conveys; yet issues involving government and religion are among the most contentious confronting us as a nation. This book, therefore, examines the origins of the constitutional separation of church and state and the difficulty of achieving both the security of religion in society and its free exercise.

The fact that Madison and others had to argue against what they considered to be establishment of religion in Virginia (and in other states) indicates that the place of religion in a democratic republic was a subject of great debate at the time of the founding. But the number and variety of issues having to do with the relation—or separation—of church and state are even greater today. The specific issues are familiar enough to all of us: prayer in public schools, abortion, tuition tax credits, the teaching of creationism, use of public funds or facilities by parochial schools, and rules regarding tax-exempt status for churches and religious schools, among others.

Religion, it should be noted, was mentioned only once in the original, unamended Constitution—in the provision prohibiting religious tests for government office. Given the alliances between church and state in the old world, however, and the religious tests that were required in most of the states at the time, for many of the framers this crucial prohibition, together with the Constitution's enumeration of limited powers, went a long way to ensure the protection of religious and other civil rights.

The Anti-Federalists, however—those who opposed ratification of the Constitution—thought more explicit provisions were needed,

-xiii-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
How Does the Constitution Protect Religious Freedom?
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen
/ 175

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.