Argumentative Essay On Religious Freedom

1088 Words 5 Pages
Religious freedom is one of the rights explicitly protected by our country’s Constitution. In the First Amendment, any establishment of a state sponsored religion or restriction on the free practice of an individual’s religion is specifically prohibited. Despite this specificity, there are still many controversies that have risen concerning this fundamental freedom. There have been many debates throughout this nation’s history, over the definition of this freedom and issues concerning religious freedom ( which have had to be settled in the highest court of the land). Courts have been debating religious freedoms since before the U.S. Constitution was even formulated. In 1786, the Virginia General Assembly passed a resolution called the “Virginia Statue for Religious Freedoms.” This statue would serve as the basis on which the the First Amendment of the U.S. …show more content…
The RFRA states that the government should not “substantially burden religious exercise without compelling justification (Karaim, 6).” This gives courts a greater level of individual interpretation opposed to the stricter mandates previously passed by the Supreme Court. Soon after, in 1997, the Supreme Court decided that the RFRA did not apply to the states, however many states created their own version of the legislation based on the federal model. The essence of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act has led to several controversial decisions by the Supreme Court, such as the case involving Hobby Lobby, and the company’s refusal to provide contraceptives to it’s employees based on religious convictions. Advocates of the RFRA hailed this decision as a victory and an example of the success of the RFRA’s protection of religious freedom. However, some believed that the RFRA would give people the legal ground to circumvent laws using the excuse of religious

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