Do you value your religious freedom? Take a gander at what Obama’s lawyer for the EEOC just argued in front of the Supreme Court on the issue of Lutheran religious freedom:
President Obama’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claimed during oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court last week that it can order a church to restore a fired minister to a teaching position.
But that was a claim not even the president’s handpicked appointee, the very liberal Justice Elena Kagan, could accept as she and her colleagues considered Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. EEOC. [Washington Examiner]
Then it got even worse when the justices pushed for Constitutional justification of the EEOC’s argument:
The justices then rejected the argument of Leondra Kruger, Obama’s lawyer for the EEOC, who argued that there’s no ministerial exception in the Constitution, only the same rights that secular organizations possess to choose their own affiliations.
At this, Scalia exploded. “That’s extraordinary! There, black on white in the text of the Constitution, are special protections for religion. And you say it makes no difference?”
Now, a Catholic example that shows what would be sacrificed eventually if the EEOC arguments in the case were to be upheld and followed to their logical conclusion:
Justice Samuel Alito (a Catholic) made a critical point, asking if a Catholic priest married and the church removed him from ministry for violating Catholic doctrine, could the EEOC order him reinstated.
When Kruger answered no, Alito replied that EEOC was making a judgment that certain teachings — such as the Catholic belief that priests must be celibate — are more important than the Lutheran doctrine that ministers cannot sue the church.
Chief Justice John Roberts (also Catholic) agreed, saying, “You’re making a judgment about how important a particular religious belief is to a church.” Government cannot make such theological judgments.
Roberts also asked who the exception applies to beyond ministers. Laycock fumbled the answer, saying how much time the employee spends on religious activities must be considered.
Related: “Religious Liberty and the Ministerial Exception” by Justin Dyer at Public Discourse.