Will This Make the Conservative Right Explode? Federal Judge Opposes Delegation of Government Authority to Religious Organization

From Universal Hub, we read the following:

A federal judge in Boston yesterday ruled a federal contract with a Catholic charity to administer a program to aid people brought here as prostitutes violates the First Amendment because the charity ordered subcontractors not to refer victims for abortions or birth control.

And from the judge’s opinion (boldface mine):

Violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, insofar as they delegated authority to a religious organization to impose religiously based restrictions on the expenditure of taxpayer funds, and thereby impliedly endorsed the religious beliefs of the USCCB and the Catholic Church…

This case is not about government forcing a religious institution to act contrary to its most fundamental beliefs. No one is arguing that the USCCB can be mandated by government to provide abortion or contraceptive services or be discriminated against for its refusal to do so. Rather, this case is about the limits of the government’s ability to delegate to a religious institution the right to use taxpayer money to impose its beliefs on others (who may or may not share them).

A good decision.

This entry was posted in Civil Liberties. Bookmark the permalink.