Howard M. Friedman

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In Timmons v. Polley, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14533 (D NV, Jan. 29, 2019), a Nevada federal district court allowed a Muslim inmate to move ahead with complaints regarding inadequate Halal food during Ramadan, and refusal of permission to attend Jumah services and receive certain religious material. In McKinney v. County of Imperial, 2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14927 (CD CA, Jan. 30, 2019), a California federal district court adopted a magistrate’s recommendation (2019 U.S. Dist. LEXIS
From SSRN: Michael S. McGinniss, Expressing Conscience with Candor: Saint Thomas More and First Freedoms in the Legal Profession, (Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy, Forthcoming). Robert C. Blitt, The Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s (OIC) Response to Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity Rights: A Challenge to Equality and Nondiscrimination Under International Law, (28.1 Transnational Law & Contemporary Problems 89 (2019)). Nathan S. Chapman, Money for Missionaries: Rethinking Establishment Clause History, (University of…
In the Vatican yesterday, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a statement (full text) announcing that former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick has been “dismiss[ed] from the clerical state,” i.e. defrocked.  McCarrick had already resigned from the College of Cardinals over allegations of past sexual misconduct. In laicizing McCarrick, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith found him guilty of “solicitation in the Sacrament of Confession, and sins against the Sixth…
A lawsuit was filed Friday by Americans United for Separation of Church and State on behalf of a Catholic woman challenging actions by the federal government and the state of South Carolina that permit foster-care placement agencies to use religious criteria for approval of foster care families.  The complaint (full text) in Maddonna v. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, (D SC, filed 2/15/2019) challenges the waiver from the religious discrimination ban in…
In United States v. Ofomata, (ED LA, Feb. 11, 2019), a Louisiana federal district court rejected a number of challenges to the federal death penalty, including the argument that the death-qualification process violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act and the First Amendment by necessarily excluding jurors based on their religion. The court said in part: Even assuming that Ofomata was able to show that the death-qualification process constitutes a substantial burden, his RFRA claim…
In Tanvir v. Tanzin, the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals by a vote of 7-3 denied en banc review of a panel decision that held RFRA plaintiffs could recover money damages against federal officials sued in their individual capacities. (See prior posting.) Plaintiffs in the lawsuit are three Muslim men who claim that federal officials placed or kept them on the no-fly list because they refused for religious reasons to act as FBI…
In Tanvir v. Tanzin, the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals by a vote of 7-3 denied en banc review of a panel decision that held RFRA plaintiffs could recover money damages against federal officials sued in their individual capacities. (See prior posting.) Plaintiffs in the lawsuit are three Muslim men who claim that federal officials placed or kept them on the no-fly list because they refused for religious reasons to act as FBI…
In Otto v. City of Boca Raton, Florida, (SD FL, Feb. 13, 2019), a Florida federal district court refused to grant a preliminary injunction to prevent the cities of Boca Raton and Palm Beach, Florida from enforcing their ordinances that prohibit the use by medical professionals of sexual orientation change therapy on minors.  In a 60-page opinion, the court held that plaintiffs are unlikely to succeed on their free speech, prior restraint, vagueness or…
North Jersey Record reports that the five Catholic dioceses in New Jersey yesterday posted the names of 188 priests who have been credibly accused of sexually abusing children over past decades.79 of the priests listed are still living. In a letter to the faithful of the Archdiocese of Newark, Cardinal James Tobin announced that a new Independent Victim Compensation Program has been established.…
North Jersey Record reports that the five Catholic dioceses in New Jersey yesterday posted the names of 188 priests who have been credibly accused of sexually abusing children over past decades.79 of the priests listed are still living. In a letter to the faithful of the Archdiocese of Newark, Cardinal James Tobin announced that a new Independent Victim Compensation Program has been established.…