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Freedom of speech

Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies

2006

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Religious Expression And Symbolism In The American Constitutional Tradition: Government Neutrality, But Not Indifference, Daniel O. Conkle Jul 2006

Religious Expression And Symbolism In The American Constitutional Tradition: Government Neutrality, But Not Indifference, Daniel O. Conkle

Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies

In this article, I describe and analyze three principles of First Amendment doctrine. First, the Establishment Clause generally forbids governmental expression that has the purpose or effect of promoting or endorsing religion. Second, and conversely, private religious expression is broadly defined and is strongly protected by the Free Speech Clause. Third, as an implicit exception to the first principle, the government itself is sometimes permitted to engage in expression that seemingly does promote and endorse religion, but only when the expression is noncoercive, nonsectarian, and embedded within (or at least in harmony with) longstanding historical tradition. Comparing these three principles …