The musings of a juggling mother

Rants & raves about life as a woman today, juggling work, home, kids, family, life the universe & everything.

© Mrs Aginoth. The right of Mrs Aginoth to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted in accordance with sections 77 and 78 of the Copyright, Designs and Patents act 1988

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Just say Yes

It's ok to do drugs in the US as long as God says so, apparently.

The US supreme court has just ruled that hullucinogenic drugs can be taken by the congregation of a church that claims it uses the drugs in monthly rituals to talk to God.

I know plenty of people who consider various illegal substances to be part of their culture & religion, and many, many people have claimed that they can hear God while under the influence.

Does that mean we can all do whatever we like, provided we claim it's part of our religion?

And if one religion can break one federal law under the get out of "freedom of religion", why can't others break other laws? You know - the ones about murder, incitement to hatred, physical abuse or religious tolerance?


  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 1:10:00 pm, Blogger debambam said…

    OMG I can see huge increases in church attendances and memberships can't you? In fact I can see whole new churches and religions springing up all over the place...this is just too funny, if it was that time of year I'd presume it was an April Fool's joke...

  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 2:27:00 pm, Anonymous Nanny A said…

    I may not be available on sundays in the future!!!!!

  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 3:04:00 pm, Blogger Juggling Mother said…

    bah, you're from the just say yes generation anyway Nanny A:-)

  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 6:19:00 pm, Blogger Stephen (aka Q) said…

    The use of hallucinogenics in religion goes back a very long way. I suppose the court dealt with it the same way they deal with First Nation ("Indian") issues here in Canada. You'd have to be able to demonstrate that, historically, the practice is integral to your religion.

    I assume the same logic wouldn't carry over to violence. Although religious violence has a long historical precedent, too!

  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 7:22:00 pm, Blogger Juggling Mother said…

    The problem is, who decides that one form of religious ritual is acceptable, and another not?

    If it is up to individual judges, there are going to be an awful lot of court cases, appeals and re-appeals going on!

    How about the the rituals that involve physical mutilation - they have a long relgious history, and are an integral part of many religions, but will they be allowed in a society that abhors physical damage of any kind?

    And enforced marriages (not arranged ones, actually enforced against one or both parties will)? Again, part of a long religious tradition, in many religions, but illegal under most western legal systems.

    There are many religious practises that come into direct conflict with various countries laws. Are we to say that religion is always more important than the law? or just sometimes?

    At what point do we decide the law is or isn't applicable?

  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 8:02:00 pm, Blogger Vics said…

    I'm completely with you Mrs A - either the law is the law or whats the point in having it?

  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 8:35:00 pm, Blogger mig bardsley said…

    And looking again at the article I see that the *group* O Centro Espirita Beneficente Uniao do Vegetal, *blend Christian beliefs and South American traditions*
    So as far as I can tell they are not actually devotees of a religion at all. Just a *group*.
    Which might possibly translate as "the cental, jolly decent spirit of united vegetables".
    Well it's easy to mock. so I shall.

  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 8:42:00 pm, Blogger mig bardsley said…

    On the subject of religious freedoom...didn't we set something of a precedent in the UK when a court ruled that sikhs could wear their turbans while riding motorcycles while the rest of us had to wear helmets.

    Oh just ignore me. I'm being silly.

  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 8:57:00 pm, Blogger Juggling Mother said…

    I'm not saying it's exclusive to the US - although they do seem to accept anyone's say so that something is a religion - just that it's a dangerous path to walk.

    In the UK we have also specifically legislated against a number of religions - specifically female circumcision, enforced marriages, child rape, and drug taking!

    Of course the more liberal the society, the less religions will come into conflict with the law in the first place:-)

  • At Wednesday, February 22, 2006 9:09:00 pm, Blogger craziequeen said…

    About the turbans - yes that law was relaxed for Sikhs, but it was deemed necessary to have some form of defensive plate in the makeup of the turban - Sikh policemen have the same thing, I believe.

    As for speaking to God under the influence of drugs....uhuh! Sounds way too 'cultish' for me. I like to be sober and clear-minded when I talk to God. If you're stoned, how do you know what you are saying??

    I agree, it is the short end of a VERY big wedge. Son of Sam springs to mind.

    btw - had a quick word with Him today when it began to snow. Suffice it to say, He didn't hear me and the snow stopped! :-)


  • At Thursday, February 23, 2006 7:00:00 am, Blogger 49erDweet said…

    One of the weaknesses of "freedom of religion" is the forth-coming of sillies like these. Fortunately, most Yank society looks on them askance, so they remain firmly trapped on the looney fringe.

    And the comment from Mig Bardley is spot on. South American traditions is right. They are a group of drug-users posing as a religion. But couldn't they also be akin to drug-users posing as medical patients?

    Sorry. Guess I went too far.

  • At Thursday, February 23, 2006 8:10:00 am, Blogger Juggling Mother said…

    but when drug users posing as ptients get discovered (which is more often than not) they don't et the drugs & can be prosecuted.

    The point of this story is the US court has said that these specific people can break a federal law. Regularly.


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