Sessions Information

  • January 4, 2014
    2:00 pm - 3:45 pm
    Session Type: Section Call for Papers
    Session Capacity: N/A

    (Papers to be published in St. Thomas Law Journal)


    What does it mean for religious believers and groups to refrain from “cooperating with evil”? When does involvement with government action rise to condoning it? And who decides whether a religious objector is “participating” in and thereby "complicit" with religiously objectionable conduct? Such questions play a central role in the HHS contraceptive mandate debate but they arise in other controversies as well – ranging from religious objections to same-sex marriage to the conscience claims of pharmacists opposed to stocking or selling abortifacients.


    Numerous doctrinal issues are relevant to a discussion of this problem. These include whether allegations of moral complicity satisfy the “substantial burden” requirement a RFRA or free exercise claimant must satisfy, and how courts should take attenuated causation questions into account if a substantial burden is found to exist. Other questions relate to the concern that an expansive conception of moral complicity may extend so broadly that general accommodation statutes (or constitutional interpretations) would become unacceptable in their scope and unmanageable in their operation.  This panel will explore these and other problems arising from the relationship between conceptions of moral complicity and the evaluation of religious liberty claims under constitutional or statutory law.


    Business Meeting at Program Conclusion.

Date & Time
Thomas C. Berg, University of St. Thomas School of Law

Alan E. Brownstein, University of California, Davis, School of Law

Jennifer Carr, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, William S. Boyd School of Law

Gregory A. Kalscheur, S.J., Boston College Law School

Martin S. Lederman, Georgetown University Law Center

Session Fees
  • 6340 Law and Religion: $0.00
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