Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Religious discrimination...


TITLE I. CRIMES AND PUNISHMENTS CHAPTER 272. CRIMES AGAINST CHASTITY, MORALITY, DECENCY AND GOOD ORDER Chapter 272: Section 36. Blasphemy Section 36. Whoever wilfully blasphemes the holy name of God by denying, cursing or contumeliously reproaching God, his creation, government or final judging of the world, or by cursing or contumeliously reproaching Jesus Christ or the Holy Ghost, or by cursing or contumeliously reproaching or exposing to contempt and ridicule, the holy word of God contained in the holy scriptures shall be punished by imprisonment in jail for not more than one year or by a fine of not more than three hundred dollars, and may also be bound to good behavior.


Apparently, atheists are prohibited from holding office in...
  • Arkansas (Constitution Of The State Of Arkansas Of 1874. Article 19. Miscellaneous Provisions. § 1. Atheists disqualified from holding office or testifying as witness. No person who denies the being of a God shall hold any office in the civil departments of this State, nor be competent to testify as a witness in any Court.)

  • Maryland (Article 37 of the Declaration of Rights of the Maryland Constitution That no religious test ought ever to be required as a qualification for any office of profit or trust in this State, other than a declaration of belief in the existence of God; nor shall the Legislature prescribe any other oath of office than the oath prescribed by this Constitution.)

  • North Carolina (North Carolina State Constitution, Article VI, Section 8: Sec. 8. Disqualifications for office. The following persons shall be disqualified for office: First, any person who shall deny the being of Almighty God.)

  • South Carolina (South Carolina State Constitution, Article VI, Section 2: No person who denies the existence of the Supreme Being shall hold any office under this Constitution.)

  • Tennessee (The Tennessee Constitution, Article IX, Section 2 No person who denies the being of God, or a future state of rewards and punishments, shall hold any office in the civil department of this state.)

  • ...and Texas (The Texas Constitution, Article I, Section 4: No religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office, or public trust, in this State; nor shall any one be excluded from holding office on account of his religious sentiments, provided he acknowledge the existence of a Supreme Being.)


The most bizzare part is not that there are these laws - they mostly date to 1800s. It's that they have not been challenged yet!..

Update: this article from Rolling Stones should be good for a decade in jail in Massachusetts... http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/story/20278737/jesus_made_me_puke/print...

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