Monday, December 27, 2010

Top Ten 2010 Religious Liberty/ Church-State Developments

Here are my nominations for the 2010 Top Ten Church-State and Religious Liberty Developments. The choices are based on the long-range implications of the developments on legal doctrines and on relations between government and religion. Most of these top ten were reflected in a number of Religion Clause postings over the year. I have linked to representative postings on each issue.
  • (1) Ground Zero Mosque becomes national political issue while opponents of Tennessee mosque argue that Islam is not entitled to protection as a religion.
  • (2) California federal district court invalidates Proposition 8, the California initiative that bars same-sex marriage.
  • (3) Oklahoma voters approve anti-Shariah state constitutional amendment; court enjoins certification of results.
  • (4) France bans wearing of burqa in public.
  • (5) Leaders of women's Catholic religious orders split with bishops over health care reform proposals.
  • (6)  Florida church creates international furor by proposing "Burn a Qur'an Day" for 9-11 anniversary. Eventually event is cancelled.
  • (7) Military chaplains oppose repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell.
  • (8) Supreme Court upholds Hastings College of Law policy of requiring student religious groups to accept anyone as member in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez.
  • (9) Federal district court declares that federal statute designating National Day of Prayer is unconstitutional.
  • (10) 9th Circuit upholds pledge of allegiance, and "in God We Trust" on coins and currency, against Establishment Clause challenges.
Religion Newswriters Association and Huffington Post have their own Top Ten lists of religion stories.