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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

First Amendment Religious Tolerance

As the Ground Zero mosque controversy swirls...

The 9/11 mosque supporters cite the First Amendment for freedom of religion. They forget the rest of the First Amendment, which notably precludes the "establishment" of a religion. This latter clause engendered the principle (since raised to the status of a sacrament) of "separation of church and state."

Freedom of religion does not, however, entitle the adherents of a particular faith from seeking, receiving or enjoying special treatment, preferential treatment or other advantages from government. Such treatment amounts to a government endorsement of that religion, and a dis-endorsement or disapproval of other faiths.

No one is entitled to compel a government action, or to infringe upon the rights of others. A true right, by nature, is one which imposes no cost or burden upon another.

(Eric Dixon is a New York lawyer. He is available for comment at edixon@NYBusinessCounsel.com and at 917-696-2442.)


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