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Legal Spirits Episode 004: A Ninth Circuit Ruling on Prayers at Public School Board Meetings

Chino logo

In this episode of Legal Spirits, Center Director Mark Movsesian and Associate Director Marc DeGirolami discuss Freedom from Religion Foundation v. Chino Valley Unified School District, a recent Ninth Circuit decision striking down the practice of prayer at public school board meetings in Chino Valley, California, outside Los Angeles. The Ninth Circuit ruled that prayers at school board meetings fall outside the “legislative prayer” exception and violate the Establishment Clause. Movsesian and DeGirolami review the decision and consider what it suggests about the meaning and significance of tradition in Establishment Clause cases more broadly.

Around the Web

Here are some important law-and-religion news stories from around the web:

Around the Web

Here are some important law-and-religion news stories from around the web:

Around the Web

Here are some important law-and-religion news stories from around the web:

Around the Web

Here are some important law-and-religion news stories from around the web:

Time’s Up for the Endorsement Test?

At the First Things site today, I have a post on The American Legion v. American Humanist Association, the Maryland Peace Cross case, in which the Court granted cert last month. I argue that the Court could use the opportunity to get rid of the endorsement test in Establishment Clause cases. Here’s an excerpt:

Last month, the Supreme Court agreed to consider an important Establishment Clause case from Maryland, The American Legion v. American Humanist Association. The case, which presents a challenge to a Maryland cemetery’s use of a 40-foot cross as a public war memorial, gives the Court a chance to clarify its views on the constitutionality of state-sponsored religious displays. In particular, the case provides an opportunity for the Court to do away with the so-called “endorsement test,” which holds that a display violates the Constitution if a hypothetical, reasonable observer would see it as an endorsement of religion. Conservatives have criticized the endorsement test for decades, and with a new majority on the Court, they may finally have the votes to discard it. American Legion could turn out to be one of the most significant Establishment Clause cases in a long time.

American Legion is also the subject of a recent “Legal Spirits” episode Marc and I recorded. But you have already listened to that. Right?

Legal Spirits Episode 002: SCOTUS Grants Cert in the Peace Cross Case

Peace Cross 5

The Peace Cross, a World War I Memorial, in Bladensburg, Maryland

 

In this “Legal Spirits” podcast, Center Director Mark Movsesian and Associate Director Marc DeGirolami talk about the Supreme Court’s grant earlier this month in The American Legion v. American Humanist Association, the Peace Cross case. The Court will decide whether a 90-year old war memorial in Maryland, pictured above, violates the Establishment Clause. Mark and Marc discuss the ins-and-outs of the case and speculate whether the Court will finally clear up some of the confusion surrounding religious displays on public property.

 

Around the Web

Here are some important law-and-religion news stories from around the web:

Around the Web

Here are some important law-and-religion news stories from around the web:

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