Saturday, November 11, 2006

Copycats

A couple of Georgetown students have tried to form their own religious organization in order to get around local zoning laws (being a religious group would allow them to have more people living in their house). Feh. Carleton students created their own religion well before these Georgetown imposters. And better yet, The Reformed Druids of North America actually has outlasted its original purpose (evading religion requirements our school had in the 60s), still going strong over 40 years later.

As to the legal issues, my understanding is that the law sidesteps questions of "what is a religion" by merely querying whether or not the beliefs are "sincerely held" (United States v. Ballard, 322 U.S. 78 (1944)). This isn't a particularly satisfying answer, as it doesn't distinguish between a sincerely held religious belief and a sincerely held secular one. Presumably, the Court analyzes whether the religious belief is sincerely held to be a religious one, rather than a secular belief masquerading as a religious one to gain some benefit. In contrast to the Reformed Druids, which, as mentioned before, have outlasted the tangible benefit they were claiming by a good 40 years, the Washington Post article gives no indication that these Georgetown students have any sincere belief in their "religion" outside of the extra privileges it grants them under zoning law.

Carleton 1, Georgetown, 0!

Via VC

2 comments:

Glenn said...

Thanks for posting this!

Glenn
Arch-Druid of Carleton, 1971-72

Anonymous said...

Great blog with good informations and pictures.
Thank you for this interesting blog.
I have bookmarked it.
Greetz Franz from
Limousinenservice in Munich