Home Culture Supreme Court Backs Church In Major Religious Rights Case

Supreme Court Backs Church In Major Religious Rights Case

One of the first cases to be heard by  Supreme Court  lead by Justice Neil Gorsuch involves a Christian preschool in Missouri that was denied state funds to improve a playground because of its religious affiliation.

This particular case concerned a Christian preschool in Missouri that was denied state funds, because of its religious affiliation, from an aid program to improve a playground. After being denied the funds, Trinity Lutheran Church filed suit against the state, arguing that the denial amounted to a double standard.

The case eventually made its way to the Supreme Court, where this week Justice Gorsuch remarked about the dichotomy created by the church being denied funds from “selective government programs” while government-funded police officers and firefighters were allowed to aid church-affiliated schools as part of “general programs.”

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on Monday in a major religious rights case that narrows the separation of church and state. The justices, in a 7-2 ruling, sided with a Missouri church

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer also backed the decision, calling it a “significant victory for religious liberty and an affirmation of the First Amendment right of all Americans.”

“The court recognizes the clear difference between the government supporting a particular religion and the government simply treating all people the same fairly regardless of their religion,” Spicer continued. “This ruling reaffirms that the government cannot discriminate against individuals or organizations simply because they or their members hold religious beliefs.”

Our religious institutions must be able to contribute to education and the public good—that is part of their core mission,’ House Speaker Paul Ryan explained in a statement lauding the decision. ‘When the government places special burdens on churches specifically because they are religious institutions, that is discrimination, plain and simple.’

President Trump’s education secretary, Betsy DeVos, is also a prominent supporter of such ‘school choice’ plans. DeVos celebrated the decision as well, stating that it was “a great day for the Constitution and sends a clear message that religious discrimination in any form cannot be tolerated in a society that values the First Amendment.”

Gorsuch “essentially tipped his hand” by making it clear that in his estimate, “Missouri’s refusal to fund Trinity Lutheran’s new playground is religious discrimination.”

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