494 U.S.872 PDF

Title: U.S. Reports: Employment Division, Department of Human Resources of Oregon, et al. v. Smith et al., U.S. (). Contributor Names: Scalia. Smith, U.S. (), a landmark in religious freedom jurisprudence. In Religious Freedom and Indian Rights: The Case of Oregon v. Smith, Carolyn N. Oregon Department of Human Resources. Docket no. Decided by. Rehnquist Court. Lower court. Oregon Supreme Court. Citation. US ( ).

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Louisiana Brown v. One’s right to life, liberty, and property, 44 free speech, a free press, freedom of worship and assembly, and other fundamental rights may not be submitted to vote; they depend on the outcome of no elections. Justice O’CONNOR suggests that “[t]here is nothing talismanic about neutral laws of general applicability,” and that all laws burdening religious practices should be h.s.872 to compelling interest scrutiny because the First Amendment unequivocally makes freedom of religion, like freedom from race discrimination and freedom of speech, a “constitutional norm,” not an “anomaly.

Sindermann Board of Regents of State Colleges v. As a plurality of the Court noted in Roy, a distinctive feature of unemployment compensation programs is that their eligibility criteria invite consideration of the particular circumstances behind an applicant’s unemployment: Legislatures, of course, have always been “left free to reach actions which were in violation of social duties or subversive of good order.

Moreover, y.s.872 States, including many that have significant Native American populations, have statutory or u.s872 crafted exemptions in their drug laws for religious use of peyote.

United States decision: Articles with short description Flagged U. Until today, I thought this was a settled and inviolate principle of this Court’s First Amendment jurisprudence. Gobitis Murdock v. It then considered whether that prohibition was valid under the Free Exercise Clause, and concluded that it was not. Because the health effects caused by the use of controlled substances exist regardless of the motivation of the user, the use of such substances, even for religious purposes, violates the very purpose of the laws that prohibit them.

Perry Pleasant Grove City v.

Employment Division, Department of Human Resources of Oregon v Smith

See Hobbie, U. It is difficult to deny that a law that prohibits. I In weighing respondents’ clear interest in the free exercise of their religion against Oregon’s asserted interest in enforcing its drug laws, it is important to articulate in 449 terms the state interest involved. Respondents urge us to hold, quite simply, that when otherwise prohibitable conduct is accompanied by religious convictions, not only the convictions but the conduct itself must h.s.872 free from governmental regulation.


Nor would application of our established free exercise doctrine to this case necessarily be incompatible with our equal protection cases. See Thomas, U.

The dissenters observed that it was unclear whether using peyote in religious ceremonies actually caused physical harm, as the state asserted in arguing that the ban served a compelling interest. Cantwell, for example, observed that “[t]he fundamental law declares the interest of the United States that the free exercise of religion be not prohibited and that freedom to communicate information and opinion be not abridged.

Minnesota Commissioner of Revenue, U. We rejected the claim that an exemption was constitutionally required. Applying that test, we have, on three occasions, invalidated state unemployment compensation rules that conditioned the 944 of benefits upon an applicant’s willingness to work 4994 conditions forbidden by his religion.


Employment Div. v. Smith :: U.S. () :: Justia US Supreme Court Center

The Oregon Supreme Court, on remand from this Court, concluded that “the Oregon statute against possession of controlled substances, which include peyote, makes no exception for the sacramental use of peyote.

But this comparison with other fields supports, rather than undermines, the conclusion we draw today. The Court’s parade of horribles, ante at U. Ohioimminent lawless action Hess v. Gobitis, supra, U.

Although the question is close, I would conclude that uniform application of Oregon’s criminal prohibition is “essential to accomplish,” Lee, supra, at U. Two years later, he forbade Indians under the age of 50 from participating in any dances of any kind, and directed us.872 employees “to educate public opinion” against them.

Applying that test we have, on three occasions, invalidated state unemployment compensation rules that conditioned the availability of benefits upon an applicant’s willingness to work under conditions forbidden by his religion.

As we have noted in a slightly different context. I would have thought it beyond argument that such laws implicate free exercise concerns. Barnette overruling Minersville School District v. Though the State must treat all religions equally, and not favor one over another, this obligation is fulfilled by the uniform application of the “compelling interest” test to all free exercise claims, not by reaching uniform results as to all claims.


II Respondents’ claim for relief rests on our decisions in Sherbert v. Also, the availability of peyote for religious use, even if Oregon were to allow an exemption from its criminal laws, would still be strictly controlled by federal regulations, u.s.8872 21 U.

Employment Division v. Smith

New York Whitney v. She agreed with the Court’s initial premise that the Free Exercise Clause applied to religiously motivated conduct as well as religious beliefs. As we observed in Smith I, however, the conduct at issue in those cases was not prohibited by law.

The Federal Government, which created the classifications of unlawful drugs from which Oregon’s drug laws are derived, apparently does not find peyote so dangerous as to preclude an exemption for religious use. It would be true, we think though no case of ours has involved the pointthat a state would be “prohibiting the free exercise [of religion]” if it sought to ban such acts or abstentions only when they are engaged in for religious reasons, or only because of the religious belief that they display.

Allowing an exemption for religious peyote use would not necessarily oblige the State to grant a similar exemption to other religious groups. Under the Sherbert test, governmental actions that substantially burden a religious practice must be justified by a compelling governmental interest.

The history of our free exercise doctrine amply demonstrates the harsh impact majoritarian rule has had on unpopular or emerging religious groups such u.z.872 the Jehovah’s Witnesses and the Amish. Some of our cases prohibiting compelled expression, decided exclusively upon free speech grounds, have also involved freedom of religion, cf.