The Gross National Debt

Thursday, July 9, 2015

HUZZAH! Found it!

It existed, knew that, but finding it. Aye! There's the rub.

Found it.

The Lemon Test

This is a US Supreme Court decision that's remarkably direct in its ruling. It specifically sets down how far religion and government can mix. In the 8-0 decision, the High Court says the two MAY come together, but that relationship has to pass The Lemon Test. Lemon v. Kurtzman403 U.S. 602 (1971)

  1. The statute must not result in an "excessive government entanglement" with religious affairs(also known as the Entanglement Prong)
    1. Factors.
      1. Character and purpose of institution benefited.
      2. Nature of aid the state provides.
      3. Resulting relationship between government and religious authority.
  2. The statute must not advance nor inhibit religious practice (also known as the Effect Prong)
  3. The statute must have a secular legislative purpose(also known as the Purpose Prong)

In short, government and churches can come together to do things. An absolute separation, as many imply is found in the Constitution, doesn't exist. This kind of cooperation happens in my community. Churches here send people to help with Backpack Buddies. Churches provide money to buy the food. Government, in this case the school system houses the food and backpacks and makes sure the kids who need the food get it.

This mixing even goes a step further. The State of Georgia provides me with official documentation, does background checks on me and allows me access to state facilities to preach and share the Word. The state pays the power bills, provides a building, chairs, tables and etc for these religious meetings.

Inmates attend on a voluntary basis. I do not get paid for this work. However, it is a clear mixing of religion because the state enables me to do this.

In the meantime, I am amused.

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