Hatch cheers victory for religious freedom, Holt v. Hobbs Supreme Court decision

stock image | St. George News

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Supreme Court unanimously held in Holt v. Hobbs Wednesday that the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act protects the right of a prison inmate to wear a short beard as an exercise of his religious faith. Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, a longtime member and former chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, issued the following statement:

All Americans, including prison inmates, have the fundamental right to exercise their faith.  Congress unanimously said in this statute that it should be difficult, not easy, for government to burden the practice of religion and today the Supreme Court unanimously agreed.  This decision is a victory for religious freedom.

Hatch introduced the Religious Land Use and Institutionalized Persons Act on July 13, 2000, and both the Senate and House passed it by unanimous consent just two weeks later. It prohibits government from substantially burdening the religious exercise of institutionalized persons unless doing so is “the least restrictive means of furthering (a) compelling governmental interest.”

This is the same legal standard that appears in the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Submitted by: The Offices of Sen. Orrin Hatch

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  • Koolaid January 22, 2015 at 9:47 am

    I betcha a lot of people are rejoicing this religious right thing. What’s funny about this wearing a beard as a religious freedom thing is that for males, BYU has a no-beard policy despite the fact that the school’s namesake had quite a beard himself. I betcha Hatch won’t side with any males wanting beards at BYU. Nope. Maybe the women could demonstrate for the right to bear beards by growing their own beards as a show of support.

    • ladybugavenger January 22, 2015 at 10:31 am

      I’m working on it right now.

      • Koolaid January 22, 2015 at 1:04 pm

        Right To Bear Beards Fundraiser?

        • Just Curious January 22, 2015 at 4:37 pm

          Followed by the Right to Beard Bears event.

      • Not Buying It January 23, 2015 at 1:22 am

        LOL…… GO LADYBUG

    • mesaman January 22, 2015 at 5:07 pm

      Not so, Koolie. If you would update your bias you would find that you can wear a beard at BYU, within certain provisions. I won’t tell you what they are since it will do you well to research what you like to whine about.

    • Not Buying it January 23, 2015 at 2:13 am

      Hey Koolaid I asked my wife to stop shaving now we need a fundraiser

  • Roy J January 22, 2015 at 12:23 pm

    I wonder if this decision will extend to the for profit troubled teen schools and homes in the St George area.

  • tight magic undies January 22, 2015 at 7:34 pm

    I wonder if he is for the right of FLDS having sex with their 13 year old nieces, since they read from the same good book.

    • Not Buying it January 23, 2015 at 2:18 am

      I have a good book at home. I use it to keep my kitchen table from tilting to one side

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