Current freedom of religion issue in New Jersey
Most of the religious beliefs have been concurrent with some jobs qualification in New Jersey based on the organization’s requirement and etiquette. For example, an employee was instructed to answer on the phone with merry charismas greetings which were against her belief as a Jehovah, witness believer. She refused to answer the call with the addresses and the same day she was terminated from work. These issues have brought a lot of problems infringing or supporting the right of worship. Some members of a given religion have suffered social stigma as either from minor religious practices due to the constant fights that exist between various religions in New Jersey. The state government has served to engage across multiple regulation systems such imposition of taxes to religious organizations. The state also had begun through the state laws the registration of religious groups to control their existence in the society which was contrary to the imposition of the Freedom of worship act and amendment (Alexander, Kern, and David Alexander).
The first amendment implication
The constitution amendment one on the freedom of religions, press and expression states that ‘’ the Congress shall no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise. Therefore, abridging the freedom of speech or press, or the right of people peaceable assembly and to petition the government for a redress of the grievances.’’ The amendment does not only prevent the creation or formation of a national religion, but it also prohibits the government’s assist to rule a religion even at non-preferential basis (Alexander, Kern, and David Alexander). Moreover, it also protects the rights of an individual to choose to worship or not, as it fits for him or her. Therefore, every individual in New Jersey according to the constitution has a right to worship in any religion despite the public being insightful on morality. Therefore, every citizen is free to join any group of worship or fail to worship. Therefore, the factor in religion should not come in during employment cases since all have freedom to pick whatever religion. Ideally, it’s offense for an employer to stigmatize an employee by religion.
Case filed about Religion
However, the defining factor to the freedom of religion takes root through the role of the state government to exercise control and power. The case between the American civil liberties union of New Jersey vs. Hendricks was found unconstitutional for public schools to allow the religious organizations to use school’s properties, either at night or during the weakened. This was only possible in case the religious organizations have reimbursed the full cost to the use of the building (Alexander, Kern, and David Alexander). The ruling was based on article one, the third paragraph of New Jersey Constitution which states on other things that no individual shall be obliged to pay tithe or taxes. Paying different rates for building or to repair any church, places or place of worship or perhaps maintenance of any minister or ministry without the individual’s full consciousness was not allowed. According to the case, it seems some religion were taking advantage of using public resources. Therefore, an act of consciousness is attributed to the rights of worship or the choice in religion. However, the aspect is not mentioned in any of the laws made on the public religious routines. According to the amendment, no state or federal government is allowed to make any law to infringe the rights of worship in whatever manner and thus, it undermines the freedom of worship.
However, in the year 2010 in New Jersey, the court ruled in favor of a small religious organization who had argued that the religious freedom amendment act allows them to be free from government restriction on religious purpose. They wanted the freedom to use hoasca, an illegal drug that is placed under the controlled substances act in the constitution. The chief justice wrote that the court had to review the religious freedom of people claims to the grant exception of the applicable laws. The rule was passed based on the amendments act on the liberty of religion with no state interference granted the organizational claim to use the illegal drug on religious practices. These cases conform to the allegiance of the religious organization’s freedom occurs in preference to the act of no interference based on state laws or prohibition to affect the religious organization. The boundary between the religious organization and state government was created with the law inhibiting the state from any form of interferences. The case is perhaps one of the cases filed under the Freedom of religion act in New Jersey (Alexander, Kern, and David Alexander).
Religion is an essential aspect of the existence of a nation. However, there have been issues raised through debate system on the extent and degree of freedom imposed on religious organizations. The state of New Jersey has had various amendments on the issue of freedom of worship and interference from state government. The amendment act 14 forbids the government from making laws on the issue again and describes that the religion should be an individual’s freedom to choose. The cases filed and the judgment passed on religious factors did support or declined the freedom factor of religious activities in a nation. Therefore, the freedom of worship has been reached with the state government of New Jersey allowing an individual to decide on the matter. However, state laws and other rights have tried to infringe the freedom expected.
Alexander, Kern, and M. David Alexander. American public school law. Cengage Learning, 2011.
Lupu, Ira C., and Robert W. Tuttle. “Same-Sex Family Equality and Religious Freedom.” Nw. JL & Soc. Poly 5 (2010): 274.