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					                                             THE NATION’S NEWSPAPER                                               2005



      Collegiate
         Case
        Study                                                                   www.usatodayeducation.com

Court limits file sharing,
display of Commandments

By Joan Biskupic and Toni Locy     5-8                Freedom
Give ‘em that new-time
religion

By Cesar G. Soriano                  8
                                                     of Religion
                                              Religious diversity is one of the basic freedoms protected by the
                                            first amendment of the U.S. constitution. Moreover, religious
Inside the Iraqi constitution:              groups preserve the right to organize and express their beliefs
Three main points still                     about public policy. While the Supreme Court continues to debate
remain in dispute                           where the line between state and church should be drawn, U.S.
                                            citizens are freer than those in many other countries. Celebrities
By Rick Jervis                   9-10       alone demonstrate a variety of religious beliefs, ranging from
                                            Kabbala to Buddhism, and are not shy about sharing their beliefs.
Chinese Catholics caught                    This is a marked contrast to other countries, where religion is
between churches                            controlled by the government or considered illegal. On one hand,
                                            in countries such as Egypt, Oman, Yemen, Kuwait, Syria and Saudi
By Paul Wiseman                  10-12      Arabia, religious doctrine has been incorporated into national law.
                                            On the other, in China, the government believes that citizens
                                            cannot be loyal to the government and to a church at the same
Additional Resources                        time. This case study examines freedom of religion, its impact on
                                   12
                                            society, and situations where it is lacking.




         Christian right’s alliances
         bend political spectrum
    Humanitarian issues at the core of the unlikely coalitions evangelicals have struck with
    ACLU, Planned Parenthood, the Feminist Majority, liberal Jews and Tibet’s Dalai Lama
By Susan Page                                               cease-fire in Sudan, enact legislation aimed at reducing
USA TODAY                                                   prison rape in the USA and push for more funds to fight
                                                            AIDS in Africa.
  WASHINGTON — Many evangelical Christians got                In the process, they have forged coalitions with — or
involved in politics because of a single issue: abortion.   sometimes simply pulled in the same direction as —
  But in recent years, without much notice, conserva-       activists who more often are their adversaries. The
tive Christians also have helped force the State
Department to place a higher priority on bat-
                                                     Cover         occasional allies include liberal Jews and Planned
                                                                   Parenthood, the Congressional Black Caucus and the
tling religious persecution, set the stage for a     story         ACLU, Gloria Steinem and the Dalai Lama.

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AS SEEN IN USA TODAY NEWS SECTION, WEDNESDAY, JUNE 15, 2005, PAGE 1A

   “Evangelicals have broadened their         persuade some Republican senators?            Trial debated evolution in 1925, many
perspective and widened their                 Well, you wait and see.”                      fundamentalist Christian leaders
agenda,” says John Green, a political            That could be tested in the Senate         eschewed politics as a worldly
scientist at the University of Akron and      debate on the energy bill, which              endeavor that risked contaminating
co-author of The Values Campaign:             opened Tuesday.                               the sacred. But distress about the
The Christian Right in American                  Sens. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Joe        Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision
Politics. “It's not as if the social issues   Lieberman, D-Conn. have sought                in 1973, which recognized abortion
have vanished; they still care about          evangelicals’ suppor t for their              rights, helped galvanize an evangelical
them. But foreign policy issues,              amendment to limit global-warming             political movement.
environmental issues, even social             pollution. Conservative Christians              In the three decades since then,
welfare issues have joined the agenda.        working on the issue aim to release a         fundamentalists have had mixed
That has led them to develop broader          consensus statement on it this                success on abortion. Twenty-nine
alliances in some really odd ways.”           summer. Their advocacy is                     states mandate counseling for women
   “Conser vative Christians will             controversial among some evangelicals         before they can obtain abortions and
continue to fight hard on the life issue      and could put them at odds with the           34 states require minors seeking
and the definition of marriage,” says         White House.                                  abor tions to either notify or get
Gary Bauer, head of an advocacy group            Evangelicals’ engagement on a wider        consent from their parents. But a
called American Values and a GOP              range of issues and their willingness to      constitutional amendment banning
presidential contender in 2000. “But          forge surprising coalitions reflect the       abortion is stalled, and a federal law
there is a willingness on another day to      growing maturity and sophistication of        outlawing a procedure that opponents
make common cause with liberals.”             the most powerful emerging force in           call partial-birth abortion is entangled
   The latest examples: debt relief and       American politics today. And while the        in court challenges.
global warming. Conser vative                 alliances formed on, say, Sudan aren’t          On other issues, however, evangelical
Christians were among those who               likely to change anyone’s mind when           Christians in recent years have played
pushed for an accord reached in               the topic turns to abortion or same-          a crucial role in lobbying for laws that
London on Saturday by major                   sex marriage, they could help                 have reshaped U.S. policy, including
industrial nations to cancel at least $40     moderate the bitter tone of the nation’s      diplomacy toward such key nations as
billion of debt owed by the world's           politics.                                     China and Saudi Arabia. Among them:
poorest nations to international aid             “It offers the possibility on both sides     v The International Religious
organizations. And the National               to derail the demonization process,”          Freedom Act, passed in 1998, stipulates
Association of Evangelicals and other         says Larry Eskridge of the Institute for      that promoting religious freedom is a
conservative Christian groups are             the Study of American Evangelicals at         basic aim of U.S. foreign policy and
putting their clout behind efforts to         Wheaton College, a Christian college in       requires the State Department to take
limit the “greenhouse gas” emissions          Wheaton, Ill. “It maybe offers the            specific steps to monitor and promote
linked to global climate change.              possibility of at least getting both sides    it. The measure was pushed by a
   That campaign has been identified          to hear and respect the other’s point of      coalition of conservative Christians,
with mostly secular, mostly liberal           view — initiating dialogue and maybe          Jews, Catholics, mainline Protestants,
environmentalists who disagree with           thinking your political opposite doesn’t      Tibetan Buddhists and others.
evangelicals on population control,           have horns growing out of their head.”          v The Trafficking Victims Protection
among other things.                              “The less people see people as uni-        Act, passed in 2000, aims to dismantle
   ‘Critical piece of the pie’                dimensional, the better off we are,”          the international crime syndicates that
   “We offer a critical piece of the pie,     says Eleanor Smeal of the Feminist            send women and children from the
namely that we represent conservative         Majority. Her group supports abortion         developing world into prostitution and
evangelicals who are the mainstay of          rights that are anathema to the               sweatshops. Its supporters ranged
the GOP coalition that's running both         evangelical Christian organizations, but      from feminist Gloria Steinem to Chuck
ends of Pennsylvania Avenue,” says the        they joined in lobbying for a law             Colson, a former Nixon aide and
Rev. Richard Cizik, the vice president        against international sex trafficking.        founder of Prison Fellowship
for governmental affairs at the National                                                    ministries.
Association of Evangelicals and an            Galvanizing a movement                          v The Sudan Peace Act, passed in
energetic supporter of the broader                                                          2002, was promoted by evangelicals,
agenda. “You don't think we can                 For a half-century after the Scopes         the Congressional Black Caucus and

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others outraged by the Muslim                former secretary of State Madeleine          support. Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe,
government's attacks on Christians in        Albright says. In a speech at                a Republican who as chairman of the
the south. The measure and its threat        Georgetown University in March, she          Environment and Public Works
of sanctions are credited with laying        said the two extremes “may not               Committee is taking the lead on the
the groundwork for a cease-fire in           always meet, but they do overlap.”           energy bill, calls the coalition on global
2003 and a peace treaty in 2004,                Albright, a liberal Democrat, last        warming “a farce” and an effort by “far-
though violence continues in Darfur.         month approached Sen. Sam                    left environmentalists” to diver t
  v The North Korea Human Rights             Brownback of Kansas, a conservative          attention from family issues.
Act, passed last year, directs the           Republican, about co-sponsoring a              “Those people who are the antithesis
administration to do more to help            conference in the fall on international      of everything we believe are trying to
defectors and emphasize human rights         human rights issues. He has agreed.          divide and conquer ... and they have
issues as well as nuclear proliferation in      Brownback, a leading figure on            divided us,” says Inhofe, who is a born-
dealing with the rogue nation. The bill      evangelical causes, has worked with          again Christian. He calls global warming
was pushed by Korean Americans and           such liberals as Massachusetts Sen.          “a hoax” and says evangelicals should
conservative Christians.                     Edward Kennedy on counseling                 heed the biblical injunction to worship
  “In the last decade, evangelicals have     families about Down syndrome and             the creator, not the creation.
provided the grass-roots muscle for          California Sen. Barbara Boxer on               There is some unease among their
the most important human rights              women’s rights in Afghanistan. He says       new allies, too.
movement since the end of the Cold           such alliances work best on issues that        Rabbi David Saperstein, a veteran
War,” says Allen Hertzke, a University       are “the right thing to do” but offer        lobbyist in Washington for liberal
of Oklahoma professor and author of          little partisan gain.                        causes, says he worries about “the
Freeing God’s Children: The Unlikely            “You get directly at the issue of         danger of legitimizing leaders and
Alliance for Global Human Rights,            abortion, of (same-sex) marriage,            viewpoints and organizations who are
published in October. He says they           you've got pretty hard, dug-in sides         deeply problematic to you in other
have created “a new architecture for         that are well-built into the base of each    contexts.” The Reform Jews he
human rights in American foreign             party,” he says. “They're tough to           represents work with evangelicals on
policy.”                                     change, and there’s political gain or loss   the Sudan and religious freedom but
  About two dozen leaders from a             in those.”                                   disagree with them on school prayer,
range of religious organizations, allies                                                  judicial appointments, the separation
since they worked on the Religious           Strains within the movement                  of church and state and other issues.
Freedom Act, continue to meet on                                                            Cizik of the National Association of
most Tuesdays at the Religious Action          The National Association of                Evangelicals says critics within his
Center for Reform Judaism in                 Evangelicals, which represents 52            camp accuse him of “sidling up to the
downtown Washington. (In the 1960s,          denominations with 45,000 churches           pro-aborts and the radical enviros.” He
the center was a gathering place for         and 30 million members across the            rejects “environmentalist” as too
liberal religious leaders planning the       countr y, approved a sweeping                loaded a term to apply to himself;
March on Washington and plotting             document in October called “For the          instead, he describes himself as
passage of landmark civil rights             Health of the Nation: An Evangelical         someone who believes in the “care of
legislation.)                                Call to Civic Responsibility.” The           creation.”
  When President Clinton was in the          statement lists seven priorities for           But he’s a convert to the concept of
White House, left-leaning activists in       conservative Christians that include not     political partnerships. “It’s the only
the group provided access to top             only promoting religious freedom and         way you get anything done in
administration officials. After Bush took    opposing abortion but also seeking           Washington,” he says. “So be real.”
office, evangelical Christian leaders        “justice and compassion for the poor           Actually, the fact that the
were the ones able to arrange sessions       and vulnerable” and “labor[ing] to           partnerships are surprising —who
with senior White House aides.               protect God's creation.”                     knew that fundamentalists and
  “Within the American political               But the move to a broader agenda —         feminists agreed on anything? —
spectrum, the religious right and the        particularly on the environment — has        increases their clout. On a polarized
internationalist left stand at opposite      created strains among evangelicals,          issue like global warming, that could
poles, but on humanitarian issues, it's      and between evangelicals and the             make all the difference, says Tim
more a circle than a straight line,”         Republican Par ty they generally             Profeta, a former Senate aide who now

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heads Duke University’s Nicholas Institute for                   political orthodoxies that have arisen over this issue,” he
Environmental Policy Solutions.                                  says, “and make people look afresh.”
  “What it will do, hopefully, is break down some of the




 Expanding agenda, surprising alliances
   Evangelical Christians, whose political priorities include opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage,
   also have worked on other issues that involve some surprising allies. Among them:

    Issue                                                Allies
    v International religious persecution                v Tibetan Buddhists, liberal Jews, Catholics

    v International sex trafficking                      v Gloria Steinem, National Organization for
                                                           Women, Planned Parenthood

    v Civil war in Sudan                                 v Congressional Black Caucus members

    v Global warming                                     v Environmentalists

    v AIDS in Africa                                     v Rock star Bono

    v Prison rape                                        v ACLU, Human Rights Watch

     Source: USA TODAY research




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Court limits file sharing,
display of Commandments
                                                                         Ten Commandments




                                                                                 By Joel Salcido for USA TODAY


Allowed: A granite monument showing the Ten Commandments stands outside the Texas Capitol in Austin.
                                                   over whether such displays — which are present at
Exhibits’ overall                                  public buildings in every state — amount to an
                                                   impermissible gover nment endorsement of
message, motive                                    religion.
                                                     The court struck down the posting of the Ten
seen as key factors                                Commandments on plaques at two Kentucky
                                                   courthouses in 1999, saying the displays were
                                                   blatantly religious and a violation of the First
By Joan Biskupic and Toni Locy                     Amendment even after local officials added copies
USA TODAY                                          of the Declaration of Independence, the Magna
                                                   Carta and other documents.
  WASHINGTON — A divided Supreme Court on            Separately, however, a different mix of justices
Monday limited governments’ ability to display     ruled that a granite Commandments monument
the Ten Commandments on public property. The       on the grounds of the Texas Capitol was acceptable
              cour t said lo cal off icials must   — in part because the stone, which is surrounded
 Cover        remain neutral toward religion and   by other historical monuments, had been there for
 story        that such displays will b e
              p er mitte d only if the setting's
                                                   four decades without drawing objections from the
                                                   community.
overall message is secular.                          Together, the rulings put a new spotlight on the
  The court’s statement came in two 5-4 rulings    motives of local elected officials who seek to
that reflected deep divisions among the justices   display the Commandments. The decisions
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essentially ensure that governments        rash of new lawsuits over such              pretty solid. I think in general we got a
will not b e able to exhibit the           displays, particularly those that have      message saying that government
Commandments alone in the future,          been put up in recent years at the          buildings can't be decorated like a
and they are likely to lead to more        behest of evangelical groups.               church.”
lawsuits challenging existing displays.      A key issue in the rulings is when          Disputes over other religious
  In the Kentucky decision, the court’s    Commandments displays were put up,          displays on public property also could
majority — the four liberal justices       said Francis Manion, a lawyer with the      be affected by Monday’s rulings.
and Sandra Day O’Connor, who is at         American Center for Law and Justice,          In Houston, where a 50-year-old
the cour t's ideological center —          which is opposing challenges to             display of a Bible outside the Harris
stressed that in disputes over             Commandments displays in 10 cases           County Cour thouse was ordered
Commandments displays, lower court         nationwide.                                 removed by a federal judge, backers of
judges should examine what led a             “The older ones, you are not going to     the display are hopeful that Monday's
community to erect a religious             get rid of,” he said. “But the newer        rulings will aid their case.
symbol, as well as the statement the       ones, that’s where there may be a             Marilyn Fountain, a spokeswoman
symbol makes.                              problem.”                                   for the Star of Hope Mission, said the
  That drew a scathing dissent from          Nathan L ewin, a lawyer who               Bible was displayed in a memorial
Justice Antonin Scalia, who said the       represents the New York-based               tribute to William Mosher, a Houston
ruling would lead to local officials       National Jewish Commission on Law           businessman who was a volunteer for
b eing penalized for expressing            and Public Affairs, said the cour t         the mission. The display was
“religious values.” From the bench         offered “little guidance” on the issue.     challenged by a local real estate
Monday, Scalia declared that the           “Rather than resolving the Ten              broker, and in August 2004 a federal
decision “ratchets up hostility to         Commandments issue, it just                 judge said the Bible should b e
religion.”                                 encourages a lot of litigation,” he said    removed. The issue now is before an
  In a nod to the tension that roughly     of the court’s rulings. “Everybody will     appeals court.
two-dozen legal disputes over              start asking, ‘What’s the history of this     “It is encouraging that the justices
Commandments displays have                 monument? and ‘What’s the history of        are making a distinction between a
sparked across the nation, Justice         that monument?’”                            religious object that is placed for the
David Souter, writing for the majority       Kelly Shackelford, chief counsel for      purpose of proselytizing to the public
in the Kentucky case, said that “the       the Dallas-based Lib er ty L egal           vs. something that is placed as a
divisiveness of religion in current        Institute, which represents the             monument,” Fountain said.
public life is inescapable.”               Fraternal Order of Eagles, the group          New polls indicate that most
  But, he added, “this is no time to       that donated the Texas monument in          Americans don’t mind Ten
deny the prudence of understanding         1961, said there is “no doubt” the          Commandments displays in public
the [Constitution] to require the          rulings will lead to more lawsuits over     settings. A USA TODAY/CNN/Gallup
gover nment to stay neutral on             religious displays. However, he called      Poll last weekend found that 75% of
religious belief, which is reserved for    the Texas decision a “99% win” for          Americans believe the Supreme Court
the conscience of the individual.”         suppor ters of such displays. “The          should allow b oth the Texas and
  The disputes over Commandments           message is: You could put up a Ten          Kentucky displays. And a survey by
displays nationwide have reflected the     Commandments monument today if              the First Amendment Center says 56%
ongoing tension over how much              you want, as long as you do it in the       of     Americans         b elieve   that
government should be allowed to            proper way,” he said.                       Commandments              displays     in
embrace religion. Courts have issued         The Rev. Bar r y Lynn, executive          government buildings are OK.
conflicting rulings, so those on both      director of Americans United for              The Rev. Rob Schenk, a conservative
sides of the debate had hoped for          Separation of Church and State, which       Christian activist, noted such
clarification from the Supreme Court.      is involved in four lawsuits over           sentiments Monday. “The average
                                           Commandments displays, said                 American has known all along that
New displays ‘may be a problem’            confusion over the rulings will force       there's nothing wrong with displaying
                                           the high court to revisit the issue.        these timeless words,” he said. “It’s
  The justices’ divisions and focus on       “Yes, there was a stone taken from        taken this long for the Supreme Court
the intent of Commandments displays,       the wall separating church and state,”      to catch up.”
however, led legal analysts to predict a   he said. “But the foundation still looks


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Breyer casts swing vote                    with a portion of the Hebrew text of        the Capitol grounds promotes religion,
                                           the Commandments. As several                favoring the Christian and Jewish
  The split r ulings came ab out           observers in the court looked up at         faiths.
because Justice Stephen Breyer, one of     the frieze, Souter said that showing          The 6 -foot-tall, 3-foot-wide
the court’s more liberal members,          Moses with 17 other lawgivers, most         monument was given to the state by
voted with four conservatives — Chief      of them secular figures, does not           the Eagles, as part of a nationwide
Justice William Rehnquist and Justices     signal gover nment suppor t for             campaign to provide youth “with a
Anthony Kennedy, Clarence Thomas           religion.                                   common code of conduct.”
and Scalia — to allow the Texas               In emphasizing that courts should          Lower cour ts ruled against Van
monument.                                  focus on a government’s purpose in          Orden. A U.S. district court said that
  Breyer said the Texas dispute was a      displaying the Commandments,                “this passive monument cannot be
borderline case. He noted that the         Souter noted that the county officials      said to advance, endorse or promote
monument on the state Capitol              in Kentucky had added other items to        religion.” An appeals court noted that
grounds was near other historical          the displays only after b eing              the display is among 17 monuments
monuments and that its overall             challenged in court. “No reasonable         there that commemorate “people,
message was not religious. That the        observer could swallow the claim that       ideals, and events that compose Texas
monument has stood for four decades        the counties had cast off the objective     identity.” In his appeal, Van Orden,
without challenge reinforced the           so unmistakable in the earlier              represented by Duke University law
notion that its message was not            displays,” Souter wrote.                    professor Erwin Chemerinsky, said
widely viewed as religious, he said.          The ruling in the Kentucky case          “the placement of the monument ...
  That, he said, separated the Texas       marked a subtle shift in the high           means that no viewer could
display from the plaques on the walls      court’s standard for deciding whether       reasonably think that it occupies this
of the McCreary and Pulaski county         religious displays are permissible.         location without the support and
cour thouses in Kentucky. The              Previously, the court had focused           approval of the government.”
Kentucky displays, Breyer said,            squarely on whether a “reasonable             After Monday’s ruling against his
reflected an effor t “to promote           observer” of such a display might           client, Chemerinsky said, “The court
religion, not simply an effort primarily   believe that it signals government          reaffirmed that there are significant
to reflect, historically, the secular      support for religion.                       limits to putting the Ten
impact of a religiously inspired              In his dissent in the Kentucky ruling,   Commandments on gover nment
document. ... In a nation of so many       Scalia took aim at the majority for         property. I think the justices took the
different religious and comparable         endorsing what he cast as a shifting        two cases in the hope that they would
non-religious fundamental beliefs, a       standard. “What distinguishes the rule      offer clarity. Unfortunately, I don’t
more contemporary state effort to          of law from the dictatorship of a           think they did that.”
focus attention upon a religious text is   shifting Supreme Court majority is the
certainly likely to prove divisive in a    ... requirement that judicial opinions      Contributing: Laura Parker
way that this long-standing, pre-          be grounded in consistently applied
existing monument (in Texas) has           principle,” he said. In the Kentucky
not.”                                      ruling, the majority “admits that it
  In his majority opinion in the           does not rest upon consistently
Kentucky case, Souter stressed the         applied principle.”
religious       nature       of     the       L awyer Mathew Staver, who
Commandments, that they are a              represented the Kentucky counties,
sacred text in the Jewish and Christian    said the message to public officials
faiths.                                    who want to exhibit the Ten
  He said that does not mean that          Commandments is: “Everything you
they never can be displayed on public      say can and will be used against you.”
property. From the bench Monday, he           The Texas case began when Thomas
said that in the justices’ own             Van Orden, once a practicing lawyer
courtroom, a marble frieze includes        who now is homeless in Austin, sued
the figure of Moses holding tablets        the state, saying the monument on


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 Breyer’s switch splits decisions
   The Supreme Court’s 5-4 decisions Monday in two Ten Commandments cases reflected how divided the justices are over
 religious displays on public property. The decisions — rejecting Commandments plaques at two courthouses in Kentucky but
 approving a monument outside the Texas Capitol — came about because Justice Stephen Breyer switched sides:
  Case: McCreary County v. ACLU of Kentucky                           Case: Van Orden v. Perry

    Ruling: 5-4. Ten Commandments plaques at the McCreary               Ruling: 5-4. A 6-foot-tall, 3-foot-wide monument to the Ten
  and Pulaski county courthouses in Kentucky represent an             Commandments on the grounds of the Texas Capitol is
  impermissible government endorsement of religion.                   permissible because it is not overtly religious.

  Voting with majority:                                               Voting with majority:
    v John Paul Stevens                                                 v William Rehnquist
    v Ruth Bader Ginsburg                                               v Clarence Thomas
    v Sandra Day O'Connor                                               v Anthony Kennedy
    v David Souter                                                      v Antonin Scalia

     Justice Stephen Breyer joined a decision that said, in part:        Breyer offered this concurring opinion: “The case before us
  “The reasonable observer could only think that the Counties         is a borderline case. ... The circumstances surrounding the
  meant to emphasize and celebrate the Commandments’                  display’s placement on the Capitol grounds and its physical
  religious message. This is not to deny that the                     setting suggest that the state itself intended the ...
  Commandments have had influence on civil or secular law. ...        nonreligious aspects of the tablet’s message to predominate.
  The point is simply that the original text viewed in its entirety   And the monument’s 40-year history on the Texas state
  is an unmistakably religious statement dealing with religious       grounds indicates that that has been its effect.”
  obligations and with morality subject to religious sanction.”

  Dissenting: Chief Justice William Rehnquist, Clarence               Dissenting: John Paul Stevens, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sandra
  Thomas, Anthony Kennedy, Antonin Scalia.                            Day O’Connor, David Souter
   Sources: USA TODAY research, Supreme Court


AS SEEN IN USA TODAY LIFE SECTION, WEDNESDAY, MAY 26, 2004, PAGE 2D


Give ‘em that new-time religion
By Cesar G. Soriano                                                     Other celebrities in the news because of their outspoken
USA TODAY                                                             religious views:
                                                                        v Mel Gibson is a traditional Catholic who rejects many
  Before celebrities flocked to Kabbalah, there was                   of the Vatican’s liberalizing reforms. He is building a church
Scientology.                                                          in Malibu, Calif., where Mass will be conducted in Latin.
  Among its followers: Tom Cruise, John Travolta, Kelly               Gibson’s devotion to traditional piety led him to film his
Preston, Lisa Marie Presley, Jenna Elfman, Catherine Bell             mega-hit The Passion of the Christ.
and Kirstie Alley.                                                      v Pop singer and reality star Jessica Simpson began her
  Scientology was founded in 1954 by science-fiction                  career in contemporary Christian music. The daughter of a
writer L. Ron Hubbard. There is no god in this religion. A            Baptist minister, she was outspoken about remaining a
Scientologist’s ultimate goal is to become “clear,” the term          virgin until her 2002 wedding to Nick Lachey.
used to describe true spiritual enlightenment achieved by               v Actor Richard Gere has been a Buddhist since his early
shedding painful past experiences.                                    20s and is a personal friend of the Dalai Lama. Gere has
  Adherents reach that goal through therapy-like sessions             testified before Congress on the plight of Tibetans and co-
called “auditing,” during which they are wired to a device            founded New York’s Tibet House, which promotes Tibetan
called an E-Meter that measures a person’s spiritual state.           art and culture.
  Critics have labeled Scientology a cult in part, they say,            v Pop star Prince has been a devout Jehovah’s Witness
because it pushes members into buying expensive courses               since 2001. He made news in October when he dropped
and auditing sessions. Church enemies are intimidated                 by the home of a Minneapolis couple and tried to convert
with threats and lawsuits, critics say.                               them from their Jewish faith.
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Inside the Iraqi constitution: Three
main points still remain in dispute
By Rick Jervis                          says Mahmoud Othman, a Kurdish        the central government in Baghdad
USA TODAY                               legislator who is on the              will distribute oil and gas revenue
                                        constitutional committee.             to the regions based on population.
  BAGHDAD — Iraqi legislators are         The provision was included as a     But poorer regions and those
scheduled to vote on a draft            way to acknowledge the Kurdistan      neglected under Saddam’s rule will
constitution today, even though         region to the north, which has        also initially get a higher cut, the
Sunni Arab leaders continue to          enjoyed de-facto autonomy since       draft says. Sunni leaders worry that
voice sharp differences with            1991, Othman says. Sunni leaders      means more money for Shiite and
Kurdish and Shiite lawmakers.           have warned it will lead to other     Kurdish areas.
  Some key questions and answers        breakaway regions and the
ab out the state of the                 ultimate splintering of Iraq. They      Q: What does the constitution
constitutional process and the          want the provision nar rowly          say about the role of Islam?
outstanding issues:                     applied to Kurdistan, Othman says.      A: The draft identifies Islam as “a
                                        Shiites and Kurds want the option     major source” of legislation and
  Q: W hat major issues have            open to all provinces.                prohibits the creation of laws that
been agreed to?                                                               contradict its teachings. It also
  A: Representatives of Iraq’s three       Q: What does the constitution      prohibits the creation of laws that
main factions — Shiites, Sunnis and     say about purg ing B aathists         contradict democratic principles
Kurds — have agreed to wording          from government positions?            and basic human rights, a provision
describing how Islam will influence        A: The Baath Party, which ruled    secular Iraqis hope bars Iraq from
legislation, the distribution of oil    Iraq for nearly four decades, is      b ecoming a hard-line Islamic
revenue and the government’s            prohibited from being recognized      theocracy like Iran.
structure.                              as a political entity. The De-          Kurds, who are Sunni Muslim and
                                        Baathification Commission, a group    generally secular, joined Sunnis in
  Q: What issues are still being        created two years ago to weed out     opposing the strong Islamic state
debated?                                former Baath leaders from             advocated by some Shiites.
  A: As of Wednesday, three main        government, is allowed to continue      One of the most contentious
points were in dispute: federalism,     its work.                             issues has b een the placing of
or allowing semi-autonomous                                                   “experts” on sharia, or Islamic law,
regions within Iraq; the mention of       Q: Why do Sunnis object?            on the Iraqi Supreme Court. The
Saddam Hussein’s Baath Party in           A: Sunni Arabs dominated the        exact number of experts and the
the constitution; and the division of   ranks of the Baath Party, giving      method of choosing them will be
power among the president,              them a stranglehold on power          assigned by a law enacted by a
parliament and Cabinet.                 despite making up about 20% of        two-thirds vote in the national
                                        Iraq’s    population.       Sunni     assembly.
  Q: What does the constitution         representatives argue that only         Also at issue was whether to have
say now about federalism?               Baath leaders accused or convicted    sharia judges administrating civil
  A: The constitution allows for one    of crimes should be barred from       cases, such as marriages, divorces
or more of Iraq’s 18 provinces to       government, Othman says.              and estates. On Wednesday,
hold a referendum and form a                                                  negotiators agreed to let
“region” that will enjoy limited         Q: W hat has be en decided           individuals choose the type of
autonomy, allowing them to form a       about distributing oil revenue?       judge to hear their case, Othman
parliament, ministries and budget,       A: The constitution currently says   says.


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  Q: Is it unusual for Islamic law        religious courts, which can limit the                      have been striving to include Sunnis
to be reflec ted in the                   rights of women in inheritance,                            into the political process as a key
constitutions of Arab states?             marriage and other issues, but it                          strategy in dismantling the mostly
  A: Egypt, Oman, Yemen, Kuwait,          allows people to choose between                            Sunni-driven insurgency.
Syria and Saudi Arabia are among          civil and religious courts.
the Arab nations in which Islamic                                                                      Q: W hat happens if the
law plays a central role. Those             Q: Why are Kurds and Shiites so                          constitution is rejected by voters
countries vary, however, in how           concer ned about appeasing                                 in the Oct. 15 referendum?
strictly Islamic law is applied.          Sunnis?                                                      A: Under Iraq’s transitional law,
                                            A: Kurdish and Shiite political                          the parliament will dissolve if the
  Q. What does the constitution           groups hold 258 seats in the 275-                          referendum fails. Elections for
say about the role of women?              member National Assembly and                               another transitional government
  A. The draft constitution pledges       could pass the constitution. But the                       will be held before Dec. 15 and the
to “pay attention to women and            referendum could be voted down if                          political proces will start over.
their rights.” It also requires that no   two-thirds of voters in three                                If it passes, general elections are
less than 25% of the seats in the         provinces reject it. Sunnis dominate                       held by Dec. 15 for a permanent
assembly be reserved for women.           at least three of Iraq’s provinces.                        government. Iraq’s new legislators
The constitution does not mandate           Additionally, U.S. and Iraqi officials                   take office by Dec. 31.


AS SEEN IN USA TODAY NEWS SECTION, TUESDAY, APRIL 5, 2005, PAGE 5A



Chinese Catholics caught between churches
Pope was unable to ease                                         Roman Catholics around the world
                                                                 There are nearly 1.1 billion Catholics in the world. Breakdown by continent as of January 2003 (in millions):



tension between Vatican,                                                                                                          280

communist government
                                                                                          228                      Europe
                                                                           North
                                                                           and
                                                                           Central
                                                                                                                                                               110
                                                                                                                                                                         Asia
                                                                           America

By Paul Wiseman                             Soviet bloc                                                                       137
USA TODAY                                   comrades into              South
                                                                                                                         Africa
                                                                                                                                                           Australia/
                                                                                                                                                                          8
                                            oblivion. “They          America
                                                                             307                                                                       New Zealand/
                                                                                                                                                       Pacific Islands
  HONG KONG — The pope who                  attribute the
helped demolish communism in                downfall of
                                                                Reported by Melanie Eversley,
                                                                USA TODAY
                                                                Source: Catholic Almanac 2005


Eastern Europe couldn't make a dent         communism in                                                                                                                         USA TODAY



in it in China.                             Eastern Europe to the church,” says                                Chinese citizens cannot b e
  Pope John Paul II never fulfilled his     Audrey Donnithorne, a Catholic activist                            simultaneously loyal to both their
dream of visiting China, never brought      in Hong Kong. “It might be true.”                                  government and a foreign-led church.
the underground Chinese Catholic              But John Paul also hoped to make                                 As a result, mainland China’s estimated
Church into the sunlight, never             inroads for the church in a country                                12 million Catholics are trapped
established diplomatic relations            where a growing numb er of the                                     b etween two churches — one
b etween the Vatican and the                nearly 1.3 billion people have been                                sanctioned by their government, the
communist leadership in Beijing.            seeking spiritual fulfillment.                                     other operating underground with
  John Paul’s labors to liberate the          China not only rejected the pope’s                               secret approval from the Vatican.
Chinese church from a secular               overtures, but it also maintained tight                              Richard Madsen, a sociologist at the
leadership were frustrated by               control over the practice of religion                              University of California, San Diego, and
irreconcilable differences with Chinese     within its borders. The reason: The                                author of China’s Catholics, estimates
leaders determined not to follow their      communist leadership b elieves                                     that two-thirds of the Chinese church

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AS SEEN IN USA TODAY NEWS SECTION, TUESDAY, APRIL 5, 2005, PAGE 5A

is underground. The underground             Vatican has the f inal say. “China          leaders such as the Tibetan Buddhist
clergy is not registered with the           doesn’t want any compromise,” says          Dalai Lama or the pope.
government and worshipers often             Bishop Joseph Zen, the outspoken              A repressive government isn’t the
meet in secret to avoid persecution by      leader of the Catholic Church in Hong       Catholic Church’s only problem. The
an officially atheist government.           Kong, a semiautonomous region that          church is mired in rural China, where
                                            enjoys religious freedom unavailable        many Catholics attend Mass mainly
High hopes for new pope                     to the rest of China. “They want a          because their families always have. As
                                            complete surrender.”                        a result, the church is often insular and
   Monday, China’s state-sanctioned           Even so, the off icial and                clannish, and it has been unable to
Catholic Church expressed hope that         underground churches overlap. The           make signif icant inroads in fast-
John Paul's successor would try to end      Vatican last year revealed that it had      growing, increasingly wealthy coastal
the tension between the Vatican and         secretly approved 49 of 79                  cities.
Beijing, the Associated Press reported.     government-sanctioned bishops.                “In the cities — Beijing, Shanghai —
“We hope the new pope can pick up             The communists, who took over             you have trouble getting priests. . . .
the late pope’s will to promote China-      China in 1949, are atheists and             There is one priest for three
Vatican relations and realize a China       ideologically opposed to religion.          churches,” says Zen, who is originally
visit,” said the Rev. Ma Yinglin, general   During the tumultuous rule of Mao           from Shanghai.
secretar y of the Chinese Patriotic         Zedong, who claimed a quasi-spiritual         The Catholic Church is believed to
Catholic Association, who conducted a       status for himself, the Chinese             be growing anyway, but not nearly as
memorial Mass at Southern Cathedral         gover nment tried to stamp out              fast as popular charismatic Protestant
in Beijing.                                 religion. Churches and temples were         sects.
   The association’s vice chairman, the     destroyed or confiscated and priests          To become a Catholic, would-be
Rev. Sun Shangen, also criticized the       and believers were imprisoned and           conver ts must receive religious
Vatican’s diplomatic ties with Taiwan,      sometimes tortured.                         instr uction. “In some of these
which China views as a renegade               After Mao’s death in 1976, the            charismatic groups, you just have to
province.                                   Chinese gover nment relaxed the             stand up and shout ‘Hallelujah!’ and
   But in recent years, the diplomatic      restrictions on religion mainly             you’re in,” says Donnithorne, honorary
differences between China and the           b ecause it decided it would b e            research fellow at the University of
Vatican have revolved around one key        impractical to open China’s economy         Hong Kong’s Center of Asian Studies.
issue: Beijing’s refusal to let the pope    to the world while cracking down on           Many Chinese, adrift after the
pick his own bishops in China. The          private religious worship.                  collapse of communism and
Chinese gover nment insists on                                                          unsatisfied with the relentless pursuit
appointing loyal apparatchiks to the        Repression remains                          of wealth in an increasingly Darwinian
church hierarchy. Catholic activists are                                                economy, are searching for spiritual
furious about China’s apparent plans          Religious repression has eased, but it    sustenance. The Chinese government’s
to appoint a bishop in Sichuan              has not vanished. Last year, the Vatican    “own philosophy is bankrupt. No one
province who also sits in the               denounced China for arresting 23            believes in communism anymore,”
parliament, the National People’s           Catholics, including eight priests,         says the Rev. Peter Barry, a researcher
Congress.                                   apparently for their involvement in the     at the Holy Spirit Study Center in Hong
   “It is a very basic thing. The Vatican   underground church. An underground          Kong. “The people are hungering and
cannot give in,” says Sister Beatrice       bishop in central Hebei province was        thirsting for something.”
Leung, a Catholic nun in Taiwan and         detained in 1997 and hasn’t been seen         That worries the leadership. The rise
author of several books on the Chinese      since. A 76-year-old bishop died last       of religious movements has signaled
church. “The bishop has to do his duty      year after being in prison for years; his   trouble for dynasties in the past.
according to canon law, and the bishop      body was delivered to his family with         In the second centur y, a faith-
is accountable to the pope.”                no explanation.                             healing Taoist sect staged a rebellion
   The Chinese government has so far          L ate last year, the gover nment          that helped bring down the Han
rejected a compromise that works in         issued new regulations that took            Dynasty. The Qing Dynasty was
communist-controlled Vietnam,               effect in March. They are designed to       weakened fatally by religious revolts,
where the government nominates a            ensure once again that religious            including the Taiping Rebellion (1850-
short list of bishop candidates but the     groups in China are not loyal to foreign    1864), in which a failed scholar

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AS SEEN IN USA TODAY NEWS SECTION, TUESDAY, APRIL 5, 2005, PAGE 5A

claiming to be the younger brother of         The dispute scuttled for good what       demise in Eastern Europe. Former
Jesus led an uprising that left 20           had been halting progress between         Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, a
million Chinese dead.                        Beijing and the Vatican.                  man who would know, has said the
  As recently as Oct. 1, 2000, the day                                                 collapse of Soviet communism “would
China celebrated the anniversary of          Strained relations                        not have been possible without the
the 1949 communist takeover, the                                                       presence of this pope.”
Vatican enraged Beijing when it                In 1999, the two appeared ready to        Analysts are skeptical about a new
canonized 120 Chinese martyrs (both          establish diplomatic relations and to     pope’s chances. “China doesn’t have
native Chinese and foreign                   agree on a papal visit to Beijing. The    the confidence to liberalize religion
missionaries). The government saw —          Vatican had signaled the church’s         because of the potential for social
or professed to see — the decision as a      willingness to cut diplomatic relations   unrest,” says Leung, a professor of
calculated insult to their national pride.   with Taiwan.                              international relations at Wenzao
  Instead, Zen recounts, the decision          But for reasons that remain unclear,    Ursuline College of L anguages in
to canonize the martyrs on Oct. 1 was        China sab otaged the emerging             Kaohsiung, Taiwan. “China has to
an accident. The date originally was         rapprochement when it hastily             suppress religion continuously.”
set for Nov. 1, but the pope’s personal      ordained three bishops without              “It’s not only about this pope,” Zen
secretary decided the weather would          Vatican approval in January 2000.         says. “It’s about what happened to the
be too rainy in Rome so he moved the           Can a new pope succeed?                 communist world.”
date. It rained Oct. 1. “It was pouring,”      John Paul, a native of Poland, was
Zen says with a sad smile.                   closely associated with communism’s



 DISCUSSION QUESTIONS                                                   FUTURE IMPLICATIONS

 1. Besides the cases listed in the article related to                  1. Do you think that religion is becoming more
    religious freedom, can you think of any foreign arenas                 important in public life? Why or why not?
    where freedom of religion is at stake? How has the
    U.S. role impacted this freedom?                                    2. What conflicts in the 21st century thus far relate
                                                                           to religious divisions? How can these b e
 2. Do you agree with the rationale in the article on the                  resolved?
    Supreme Court’s recent decision regarding the display
    of the Ten Commandments and the constitutional                      3. Do you think that religious lines will define
    precedent it establishes? Why or why not?                              relations in the international arena to a greater
                                                                           or lesser extent in the future? Why or why not?
 3. Based on the description of the points of dispute in                   What evidence can you draw from this week’s
    the Iraqi Constitution, do you think that freedom of                   USA TODAY World News to suppor t your
    religion be enshrined in a multi-sectarian society such                position?
    as Iraq? Do any other countries’ power sharing
    arrangements inform your opinion? Explain.

 4. What cases currently in the World News section of
    USA TODAY raise questions about the extent to which
    freedom of religion exists in the U.S. or other political
    systems? Do you think that this freedom is at risk?
    Why or why not?




                                   Reprinted with permission. All rights reser ved.                                 Page 12
        ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

           The First Amendment Center
          www.firstamendmentcenter.org

 Americans United for Separation of Church and State
                    www.au.org




Reprinted with permission. All rights reser ved.       Page 13

				
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