|Little Sisters of the Poor|
(Photo from www.CatholicNewsAgency.com)
In the second case, the Supreme Court threw out two discrimination lawsuits filed by teachers against their religious employers. In the opinion, written by Justice Samuel Alito, the Court held that the First Amendment protects the rights of religious institutions "to decide for themselves, free from state interference, matters of church government as well as those of faith and doctrine." The vote in that case was also 7-2, with the same lineup as in the Little Sisters of Poor case.
No doubt my liberal friends right now are beside themselves. There are two constitutional principles that consistently baffle liberals: federalism and religious freedom. Regarding the former, they think states have no autonomy, and are merely subunits of the national government obligated to do whatever they are told to do by Congress or the President. Regarding the latter, liberals believe the Free Exercise of Religion Clause is just about protecting one's right to worship as he or she sees fit, and that those religious freedoms end once one steps outside of a church.
Today, by two 7-2 decisions, the Supreme Court told my liberal friends they are wrong about the First Amendment's guarantee of religious liberty.