Constitutional Law: Freedom of religion - Lourdes University Constitutional Law: Freedom of religion - Lourdes University

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Constitutional Law: Freedom of religion

September 8, 2021 @ 1:30 pm - 3:45 pm

Shari O’Brien, Ph. D., J.D.

1:30 – 3:45 pm, Wednesdays (break included)

Sept. 8 – 29 (4 weeks)

With his customary eloquence, Thomas Jefferson expressed the elevated position religious liberty holds among liberties: “The constitutional freedom of religion is the most inalienable and sacred of all human rights.”   Notably, too, among all the rights in the Bill of Rights, freedom from establishment of religion and yet guarantee of its free exercise are the first enumerated rights in the very first amendment.

Our course will begin by tracing the struggle for religious liberty in early America and continue with an intriguing examination of landmark Supreme Court cases spanning the years. These include rulings on polygamy, saluting the flag and praying in schools, the teaching of evolution, Sunday blue laws, religious ritualistic animal sacrifice, display of the Ten Commandments in courthouses, and a baker’s refusal to make a cake for a gay couple’s wedding. During the last class, highlights of the Supreme Court’s 2021 term will be discussed. A generous break and enlightenment are promised!

Dr. O’Brien has doctorates in English and law; she worked in United States District Court. Publishing five law review articles as well as hundreds of essays and poems in national journals, she taught writing and poetry for twenty-seven years at UT and continues to practice law and write poetry today.

For more information, contact Lifelong Learning Coordinator Dr. Laura Megeath at or 419-824-3707.


September 8, 2021
1:30 pm - 3:45 pm
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