Here are some important law-and-religion news stories from around the web:
- The United States Supreme Court denied review in Perrier-Bilbo v. United States, where the U.S. 1st Circuit Court of Appeals rejected constitutional challenges to the inclusion of “so help me God” at the end of the oath of allegiance administered at naturalization ceremonies.
- The U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments in Woodring v. Jackson County, Indiana, a case where an Indiana federal district court refused to dismiss an Establishment Clause challenge to a nativity scene that is placed on a courthouse lawn each December.
- The U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals, in a 2-1 decision, refused to grant an injunction pending appeal to the Catholic Diocese of Brooklyn and to a group of Jewish synagogues, in a challenge to restrictions on the number of persons who can attend a worship service where clusters of COVD-19 cases have broken out.
- The New York City Police Department settled a lawsuit filed against it by two Muslim women last year challenging NYPD’s policy of requiring persons arrested to remove their head coverings for a mug shot. The new policy requires officers to “take all possible steps, when consistent with personal safety” to respect “privacy, rights and religious beliefs.”
- A North Carolina federal district court refused to issue a temporary restraining order to prevent a public charter school from including The Poet X in its ninth-grade language arts curriculum. Plaintiffs claim that the work disparages religion.
- A Colorado state appellate court held that Colorado’s law barring possession and growing of marijuana does not violate the Free Exercise rights of defendant, an ordained minister who grows the plants as part of his Cannabis Ministry.
- The U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom issued a report on The Global Persecution of Jehovah’s Witnesses.
- The United Arab Emirates announced liberalizing changes in its Sharia-based personal laws.