Church and State

Busy on All Fronts

April 19, 2009

William Donohue April 2009 Last December I wrote a president’s desk piece titled, “Culture War Ready to Explode.” I predicted that the election of Barack Obama would occasion a fierce battle between traditionalists and modernists, and that was because many of those in the latter category will “see in his victory a golden opportunity to wage... [Read more...]

An Anti-Catholic Law’s Troubling Legacy

November 19, 2007

Libby Sternberg November, 2007 As they went to the polls on November 7, 1922—85 years ago this month—the voters of Oregon were asked to approve an amendment to the state’s education laws that read in part: “…Any parent, guardian or other person in the state of Oregon, having control or charge or custody of a child under the age... [Read more...]

Patrick M. Garry: Wrestling with God: The Courts’ Tortuous Treatment of Religion

July 19, 2006

by William Donohue (Catalyst, 7/2006) Every now and then, I read a book I wish I had written. Such a book is Patrick M. Garry’s Wrestling with God: The Courts’ Tortuous Treatment of Religion. For those interested in how the courts have twisted the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious liberty into an unseemly mess, this is the... [Read more...]

The December Celebration

December 1, 2004

A response to the ADL’s December Dilemma   Guidelines for the recognition of Christmas for Public Schools Posted on the website of the Anti-Defamation League are guidelines called “December’s Dilemma.“ Essentially, the ADL proposes to public school administrators, teachers and parents guidelines that in essence banish virtually... [Read more...]

Catholics and the Supreme Court: An Uneasy Relationship

June 19, 2004

by James Hitchcock (Catalyst 6/2004) Perhaps the most revolutionary changes on the Supreme Court began in the 1930’s. That is when President Franklin D. Roosevelt began to choose justices inclined to approach the Constitution in a “broad” and “flexible” spirit. Some of his appointees were crudely anti-Catholic. Hugo L.... [Read more...]

Religious Expression at Christmastime: Guidelines of the Catholic League

December 19, 2003

Guidelines of the Catholic League Christmas 2003 This booklet was prepared by Gerard Bradley of the University of Notre Dame School of Law and Robert Lockwood of the Catholic League. It is a guide that we hope will be of use to Catholics, as well as to the general public, regarding what kinds of religious expression are permissible at Christmastime.... [Read more...]

Thomas Jefferson and the Wall of Separation between Church and State

March 19, 2003

by Joseph De Feo (Catalyst 3/2003) Justice Felix Frankfurter wrote, “A phrase begins life as a literary expression; its felicity leads to its lazy repetition; and repetition soon establishes it as a legal formula, undiscriminatingly used to express different and sometimes contradictory ideas.” The foregoing lines represent an apt condensation of... [Read more...]

Testimony before the U.S. House Subcommittee on the Constitution

July 23, 1996

by William A. Donohue; on the Religious Freedom Amendment (7/23/1996) On July 23, Catholic League president William Donohue testified before the Subcommittee on the Constitution of the House Committee on the Judiciary on a proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution. The Religious Freedom Amendment, which was first sponsored by Rep. Ernest Istook and... [Read more...]

Religious Expression in Public Schools.

August 19, 1995

Memo from the Clinton Administration to all public school superintendents. (August 1995) Student prayer and religious discussion: The Establishment Clause of the First Amendment does not prohibit purely private religious speech by students. Students therefore have the same right to engage in individual or group prayer and religious discussion during... [Read more...]