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Published: Saturday, Jan. 14 2012 12:00 a.m. MST

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skeptic
Phoenix, AZ

The lesson to be learned here is, that if one drinks of the poison of religion and church they will not receive first aid from the state.

Blue
Salt Lake City, UT

"But the court, by extension, also held that religion enjoys a preferred constitutional status. Specifically, the free exercise clause of the First Amendment gives religious organizations rights beyond those that secular organizations enjoy through their important rights of association and expression."

Whoa!

"Preferred constitutional status"?

That isn't even implied in the decision, let alone specified. The court ruled that religious organizations can treat their employees differently, that's all. If you go to work for a church in a "ministerial" capacity, you lose your First Amendment rights.

The Real Maverick
Orem, UT

Sigh

I get tired of repubs ranting over how religion is being trampled. Yet, these same people that complain about their Christian religious being trampled won't think twice about trampling other people's religions.

Anyone remember the outrage by these repubs when Muslims wanted to build a rec center somewhat near Ground Zero?

Where were the cries of "tolerance" and "religious freedom" then?

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

Maverick,

Why are you trying to mislead? The article was about the Court sustaining the "right" of a church to hire/fire people without government intervention. Where in that article was anything said about the right to build a building? For that matter, just because a group wants to build a "religious" building, are you implying that the Constitution protects that non-existent right to build a building?

How does "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;" have anything to do with a building in New York?

Did CONGRESS pass any law forbidding that group to worship?

Did CONGRESS pass any law dictating to the group who it should worship?

Did CONGRESS pass any law dictating that group's doctrine?

Why, then, did you twist that issue into a 1st Amendment problem?

Where is YOUR tolerance towards the LDS Church? Why do YOU object to some of its doctrines and some of its teachings? Why do YOU complain about its values?

Or, do you think that "tolerance" applies only to others?

George
Bronx, NY

funny how literal you like to be only when it fits your needs mike. your consistent inconsistency has rendered your opinions as nothing more then empty rhetoric at this point. sorry

Sarah Nichole
West Jordan, UT

What the DOJ was arguing in this case is that the ministerial exception should never apply to any case whatsoever, and should be stricken down. That exception gives churches the right to hire their own clergy. Should that be removed, as the Obama Administration was pushing for, the courts could determine at will who the churches could hire as their ministers. Thankfully, that was unanimously dropped, and the ministerial exception still applies.

The uproar over the mosque at Ground Zero (not "somewhat near", it was right next to it) was exactly the same type of uproar you'd get if a party of skinheads erected a shrine to Hitler across the street from Auschwitz. Nobody would have cared if the mosque went up down the street, like they were asked to do instead. It wasn't just Republicans who were upset by the idea, either. It was 75% of the country, and an even higher percent of New Yorkers. In any event, it has nothing whatsoever to do with this case, the Supreme Court, or the rule of ministerial exception.

It's a good ruling, and the rare unanimous decision is a pretty strong mandate.

atl134
Salt Lake City, UT

@Blue
"That isn't even implied in the decision, let alone specified. The court ruled that religious organizations can treat their employees differently, that's all. If you go to work for a church in a "ministerial" capacity, you lose your First Amendment rights. "

Well yeah, being able to treat the employees differently like that is a "preferred constitutional status" since it's a special ability they have.

@The Real Maverick
"Anyone remember the outrage by these repubs when Muslims wanted to build a rec center somewhat near Ground Zero? "

Or the mosque in Murfreesboro, Tennessee which just shows that it's not about 9/11 with a lot of these people.

@Mike Richards
"For that matter, just because a group wants to build a "religious" building, are you implying that the Constitution protects that non-existent right to build a building? "

Within reason (conforming to proper zoning laws and such) yes absolutely it does.

"Why do YOU object to some of its doctrines and some of its teachings?"

People have the right to protest and publically disagreeing with a church is different than preventing them from say... constructing an LDS temple somewhere.

Kirk R Graves
West Jordan, UT

I commend the Supreme Court for upholding the Constitutional rights of Freedom of Religion. the only way religious freedom can be maintained is if the government does not have the power to interfere with such basic things as who can be hired and fired from eclesiastical positions.

mark
Salt Lake City, UT

Okay, so can we now stop it with all the ranting about a war on religion in this country?

LDS Liberal
Farmington, UT

Churches can hire and fire who they want, when they want.
Government can not interfere.

The SCOTUS did their job.
The Constitution is still intact.

Why can't Conservatives see this?

Mike Richards
South Jordan, Utah

alt134,

The Constitution is binding on all levels of government. Do you understand that? Do you even care? No zoning board can make a law that contradicts the Constitution; however, zoning laws and laws requiring an establishment of religion to do certain things are not related. Religions can hold services in a pasture. Nothing in the Constitution requires that any level of government favor any establishment of religion.

LDS Liberal,

Why are you so upset that the Supreme Court told us that an establishment of religion does not have to ask you or anyone else for permission to hire or fire anyone. Most of us knew that from reading the Constitution. We didn't need the Supreme Court to clarify it for us.

It's about time that liberals understood that.

marxist
Salt Lake City, UT

As I understand the court's decision (and I may be wrong in some areas - please correct me if I am) a church can demand church standards and behaviors from ALL its employees, not just ministers, to include workers in the church in any capacity and workers in businesses in any capacity owned by the church. This would appear to infringe on the rights of individuals. A church this powerful becomes more than a church, it becomes a government and a political party.

peter
Alpine, UT

The fact that the Obama admin. was pushing to remove the ministerial exception from the constitution is another telling sign of how radical this "president" is. When this guy was sworn into office, did he vow to uphold or destroy the rule of constitutional law? 2012 will show whether the majority of Americans have been awakened to a sense of our awful situation or not.

atl134
Salt Lake City, UT

@peter
"The fact that the Obama admin. was pushing to remove the ministerial exception from the constitution is another telling sign of how radical this "president" is"

First off... why the quotes on president?

Secondly, this case was started in 2007-2008. Whose administration started this lawsuit? Not Obama's.

Thirdly... they weren't pushing to remove the ministerial exception (which isn't explicitly stated in the constitution btw), they were questioning how broadly the ministerial exception covers.

Esquire
Springville, UT

Sorry "peter", but the Administration getting involved and taking this to the Court for a decision was EXACTLY upholding the Constitution. It was an unsettle issue before, and now it is not.

By the way, is this a victory for individual religious freedom, or religious institution freedom? It can be argued that they are not the same.

Christy
Beaverton, OR

Some Christians have taken the idea of no establishment as persecution because they feel entitled, not to equal status, but to greater status.

And Sarah Nichole, the Park51 Islamic community center is located 2 blocks from Ground Zero. It opened last September. It's more like a YMCA than a house of worship. And it's old news.

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