HOME > NEWSROOM > ARTICLES > “Religion is Not Asbestos”

“Religion is Not Asbestos”

Last year, a U.S. Appeals Court ruled that two public high schools in Wisconsin had acted unconstitutionally by renting a church auditorium for their graduation ceremonies. While the ceremonies were not religious and were held at the church at the behest of the students for comfort and logistical reasons, the Seventh Circuit Court, in a sharply divided decision, insisted that the “pervasively religious environment” could cause students to believe the government was endorsing a certain religion. The U.S. Supreme Court has now been petitioned to hear the case.

Luke Goodrich of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, one of the organizations defending the school district, declared, “Religion is not asbestos, and the Constitution does not require the government to treat churches as contaminated buildings that are uniquely unfit for public events.”  Noting that numerous public schools similarly use church facilities, he also stated, “If the Supreme Court agrees to hear the school district’s appeal, it has the potential to become one of the most significant church–state cases in many years.”

      • Learn more about this case from the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty and from the school district.

By Aaron Mercer, Vice President Government Relations

Published: February 1, 2013

Latest News

Legislators Lining Up Against Performance Tax, More Needed

Members of Congress continue to line up against any move toward a performance tax by signing their names to the Local Radio Freedom Act (H.Con.Res.17/S.Con.Res.4).

Supreme Court Sets Date for Marriage Cases

Last Friday, the U.S. Supreme Court announced that on April 28 it will listen to oral arguments in four consolidated cases pivotal for the future of marriage in the United States.

FCC to Levy $325K Indecency Fine on Broadcaster

The FCC this week announced it will slap a Virginia television broadcaster with its maximum indecency penalty of $325,000 following that station’s airing of obscene material during an evening newscast.

Concern with Internet Order’s Message to World

In its unanimous Resolution last month against the FCC net neutrality order, the National Religious Broadcasters Board of Directors, a body of approximately a hundred key leaders among Christian communicators, similarly highlighted...

Senator Harry Reid to Retire in 2016

The top Democrat in the Senate, Senator Harry Reid, announced Friday morning that he will retire at the end of this session of Congress.

Saddleback Church Commemorates 35 Years of Ministry

Saddleback Church, founded by Pastor Rick and Kay Warren, celebrated 35 years of ministry influence and impact during a special community-wide service on Saturday, March 21, at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, CA.

In Memoriam: Dr. Arthur D. Stamler

Dr. Arthur (Art) Donald Stamler, a pioneer in broadcasting, went home to be with Jesus on Saturday, January 31, following a brief illness. He was 81.

TCKF Launches Radio Show in the Austin, San Antonio Markets

The Coming King Foundation (TCKF), led by artist Max Greiner, Jr., recently launched The Cross at Kerrville, a new radio program on KTXW 1120 in Austin, TX, and KSLR 630 in San Antonio, TX.

Video Recordings from NRB15 Convention Now Viewable on YouTube

Did you miss a session at the NRB15 International Christian Media Convention held last month in Nashville, TN?

Facebook's Troubling Hate Speech Standards

This week Facebook unveiled updated “Community Standards” intended to clarify its reasoning for what content it blocks or removes from its platform.

More News