FREE EXERCISE OF RELIGION: CASES
Reynolds v. US (1878)
Hamilton v. Regents (35)
Cantwell v. CT (40)
Minersville v. Gobitis (40)
Jones v. Opelika (42)
Martin v. City (43)
Murdock v. PA (43)
WV v. Barnette (43)
Prince v. MA (44)
Follett v. Town (44)
US v. Ballard (44)
Marsh v. Alabama (46)
Girouard v. US (46)
Cleveland v. US (46)
Kunz v. New York (51)
Niemotko v. MD (51)
Kedroff v. Cathedral (51)
Poulos v. NH (53)
Sherbert v. Verner (63)
Thomas v. Rev. Bd. (81)
United States v. Lee (82)
Bowen v. Roy (86)
Hobbie v. Empl. (87)
Emp. Div. v Smith I (88)
Employ. Division II (90)
City of Boerne I (97)
LAW AND RELIGION--
"City on a Hill" I
"City on a Hill" II
"City on a Hill" III
Religion/Law 41-50 II
Religion/Law Fifties II
Mainline Decline (60s)
Mainline Decline II
The Turbulent Sixties I
The Turbulent Sixties II
Free Speech Movement
Free Speech Mvt II
Free Speech Mvt III
Things Fall Apart I
Things Fall Apart II
Worksheet on Ch. Imag
The Megachurch I
The Megachurch II
Religion/Law Today II
Religion and Law in Contemporary US
Bill Long 10/1/06
The Turbulent Sixties II
This essay continues the outline/quotations from the previous essay. I will reproduce the outline here, and then the quotations to illustrate points III-V.
I. Excluding School-Organized Prayer and Bible Readings from the Public Schools
A. The Supreme Court in Engle v. Vitale (1962)
B. The Supreme Court in Schempp v. Abingdon School District (1963)
C. Reactions to the Court's Decisions
II. The Early Civil Rights Movement--Focusing on Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" Speech (August 28, 1963) at the Lincoln Memorial, Washington, DC.
III. The Free-Speech Movement Beginning in Berkeley, CA (1964)
IV. Three Views of the Church as a Result of the Post-WWII Situation
A. The Church as the Society of Good Americans
B. The Church as the Society of those Testifying to Having been Saved by a Work of Grace in the Soul
C. The Church as the Society of those Working for Social Justice
Discussion Question: Are these compatible? Which one/ones do you Favor? Does the Church need a Single Focus? Is there a Mission Statement that can make Everyone "Happy"?
V. The Presbyterian Church Weighs In
A. The Confession of 1967 and the Message of Reconciliation
B. The Case of Angela Davis--giving of $10,000 to her Legal Defense Fund, by the Church's Council on Church and Race
Conclusion: Confusion by the End of the 1960s
Here are the readings/texts for points III-V.
Excerpt on the "Free Speech Movement" from the Wikipedia article on the subject.
The Free Speech Movement was a student protest that began on the campus of the University of California, Berkeley in 1964 under the informal leadership of student Mario Savio and others. In protests unprecedented at the time, students demanded that the university administration lift a ban on on-campus political activities and recognize the students' right to free speech and academic freedom. The Free Speech Movement is often cited as a starting point for the many student protest movements of the 1960s and early 1970s.
Student activists, some of whom had traveled with the Freedom Riders and worked to register African American voters in the South over the summer, had set up information tables on campus and were soliciting donations for civil rights causes. Such political activity, or any political activity, on campus was against existing rules. There was also a mandatory "loyalty oath" required of faculty, which had led to dismissals and ongoing controversy over academic freedom. On September 14, 1964, Dean Katherine Towle announced that existing University regulations prohibiting advocacy of political causes or candidates, outside political speakers, recruitment of members, and fundraising by student organizations at the intersection of Bancroft and Telegraph Avenues would be "strictly enforced." This strip was until then thought to be city property, not campus property.
On October 1, former graduate student Jack Weinberg was sitting at the CORE table. He refused to show his identification to the campus police and was arrested. There was a spontaneous movement of students to surround the police car in which he was to be transported. Weinberg did not leave the police car, nor did the car move for 36 hours. At one point, there may have been 3,000 students around the car.
During this period, the car was used as a speaker's podium and a continuous public discussion was held which continued until the charges against Weinberg were dropped. About a month later, the university brought charges against the students who organized the sit-in, resulting in an even larger student protest that all but shut down the university. The center of the protest was Sproul Hall, the campus administration building, which protesters took over in a massive sit-in. The sit-in ended on December 3, when police arrested over 800 students.
After much disturbance, the University officials slowly backed down. By January 3, 1965, the new acting chancellor, Martin Meyerson, established provisional rules for political activity on the Berkeley campus, designating the Sproul Hall steps an open discussion area during certain hours of the day and permitting tables.
From The Confession of 1967, II.A.4. " Ministry of Reconciliation"
4. Reconciliation in Society
In each time and place there are particular problems and crises through which God calls the church to act. The church, guided by the Spirit, humbled by its own complicity and instructed by all attainable knowledge, seeks to discern the will of God and learn how to obey in these concrete situations. The following are particularly urgent at the present time.
a. God has created the peoples of the earth to be one universal family. In his reconciling love he overcomes the barriers between brothers and breaks down every form of discrimination based on racial or ethnic difference, real or imaginary. The church is called to bring all men to receive and uphold one another as persons in all relationships of life: in employment, housing, education, leisure, marriage, family, church, and the exercise of political rights. Therefore the church labors for the abolition of all racial discrimination and ministers to those injured by it. Congregations, individuals, or groups of Christians who exclude, dominate, or patronize their fellowmen, however subtly, resist the Spirit of God and bring contempt on the faith which they profess.
b. God's reconciliation in Jesus Christ is the ground of the peace, justice, and freedom among nations which all powers of government are called to serve and defend. The church, in its own life, is called to practice the forgiveness of enemies and to commend to the nations as practical politics the search for cooperation and peace. This search requires that the nations pursue fresh and responsible relations across every line of conflict, even at risk to national security, to reduce areas of strife and to broaden international understanding. Reconciliation among nations becomes peculiarly urgent as countries develop nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons, diverting their manpower and resources from constructive uses and risking the annihilation of mankind. Although nations may serve God's purposes in history, the church which identifies the sovereignty of any one nation or any one way of life with the cause of God denies the Lordship of Christ and betrays its calling.
c. The reconciliation of man through Jesus Christ makes it plain that enslaving poverty in a world of abundance is an intolerable violation of God's good creation. Because Jesus identified himself with the needy and exploited, the cause of the world's poor is the cause of his disciples. The church cannot condone poverty, whether it is the product of unjust social structures, exploitation of the defenseless, lack of national resources, absence of technological understanding, or rapid expansion of populations. The church calls every man to use his abilities, his possessions, and the fruits of technology as gifts entrusted to him by God for the maintenance of his family and the advancement of the common welfare. It encourages those forces in human society that raise men's hopes for better conditions and provide them with the opportunity for a decent living. A church that is indifferent to poverty, or evades responsibility in economic affairs, or is open to one social class only, or expects gratitude for its beneficence makes a mockery of reconciliation and offers no acceptable worship to God.
d. The relationship between man and woman exemplifies in a basic way God's ordering of the interpersonal life for which he created mankind. Anarchy in sexual relationships is a symptom of man's alienation from God, his neighbor, and himself. Man's perennial confusion about the meaning of sex has been aggravated in our day by the availability of new means for birth control and the treatment of infection, by the pressures of urbanization, by the exploitation of sexual symbols in mass communication, and by world overpopulation. The church, as the household of God, is called to lead men out of this alienation into the responsible freedom of the new life in Christ. Reconciled to God, each person has joy in and respect for his own humanity and that of other persons; a man and woman are enabled to marry, to commit themselves to a mutually shared life, and to respond to each other in sensitive and lifelong concern; parents receive the grace to care for children in love and to nurture their individuality. The church comes under the judgment of God and invites rejection by man when it fails to lead men and women into the full meaning of life together, or withholds the compassion of Christ from those caught in the moral confusion of our time.
In January 1971 the Council on Church and Race of the Presbyterian Church gave a grant of $10,000 to Angela Davis's legal defense effort in Marin County, CA. She, an "out of the closet" communist, was on trial for her knowledge of/participation in a shootout during a trial in August 1970 in Marin County. The following excerpt, from the Wikipedia article on her, sets the context. By the way, this grant led to considerable dissension in the Church but is consistent with one of the ways of "being the Church" discussed in IV. above.
"On August 18, 1970, Davis became the third woman and the 309th individual to appear on the FBI's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives List when she was charged with conspiracy, kidnapping, and homicide, due to her alleged participation in an escape attempt from Marin County Hall of Justice.
During the summer of of 1970, Davis had became involved in Black Panther efforts to garner support for the imprisoned George Jackson, Fleeta Drumgo, and John Clutchette, known as the "Soledad Brothers". On August 7, George's brother, 17-year-old Jonathon Jackson, along with two others, disrupted the trial proceedings in an attempt to assist the escape of friend James McClain. McClain was on trial for an alleged attempt to stab an officer. In the courthouse the three stood up from their seats, directed everyone to freeze at gunpoint, and led the judge, prosecuting lawyer, and several jurors into a van parked outside. As the hostages entered the van Jackson and the others were reported to have shouted, "We want the Soledad Brothers freed by 12:30 today!,". During the escape attempt, Jackson and accomplice William Christmas were killed in a shootout with the police. Judge Harold Haley was killed by his captors with a shotgun taped to his throat inside the van. Prosecutor Gary Thomas was paralyzed by a police bullet during the incident.
A 0.38 automatic found at the crime scene was registered in Davis's name, and she was soon wanted by the FBI for conspiracy, kidnapping, and homicide. The guns used in the kidnapping were traced to Davis, implicating her in the escape attempt. A California warrant was issued for Davis' arrest in which she was charged as an accomplice to murder, kidnapping, and conspiracy.
Davis fled California and evaded the police for over two months before being captured in New York City. She was tried and acquitted of all charges eighteen months after her capture. Her bail was posted by a Caruthers, CA farmer, Rodger McAfee.
Copyright © 2004-2007 William R. Long