PSC 315 Religious Freedom
May the United States Air Force Academy display a banner declaring “I am a member of Team Jesus Christ” in its football locker room? May the Indiana House of Representatives pray and sing a Christian song at the beginning of one of its sessions? Must employees be permitted to post at work biblical verses that condemn homosexuals? Must employees be permitted to pray multiple times during the work day? Should we prosecute Christian Scientist parents whose critically ill child dies because the only treatment he received was prayer? May public schools teach intelligent design in their science courses? The collision of religion, politics, and the law generates many sensitive questions. We will work through these kinds of questions to determine what our Constitution means when it forbids government from establishing religion and protects our right freely to exercise our many religions. We will also explore whether religion can play a productive role in politics without debasing itself or causing strife. Counts as an advanced course in American politics. This course is offered spring semester 2011-2012.
Prerequisite: Political Science 111 or 313 or permission of the instructor