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Lecture

Feb 10, 2014 Poli Sci 3NN6.docx

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Department
Political Science
Course
POLSCI 3NN6
Professor
Greg Flynn
Semester
Winter

Description
Lecture at: 03/10/2014 C LASS N OTES FOR : 3NN6 McMaster University, Fall 2013 M ONDAY , M ARCH 10, Y FREEDOM OF CONSCIENCEAND RELIGION - Do we allow religious activities that might cause harm in society? - Jehovah’s witness - Not receiving blood transfusion based on religious o What about inflammatory? That we see causing harm to others as acceptable? 1. SECTION 2(a) • Everyone has the fundamental freedoms, freedom of conscience and religion • Corporations do not have the right to claim these freedoms o Cannot assert a positive religious argument (Big M Drug Mart) - but it can assert that a particular law violates a particular person’s freedom of religion • Subject to non-withstanding clause • Subject to section 1 (Harm Principle) - despite the fact that there has been an ongoing debate it gets resolved at a section 1 argument. - Why is freedom of religion so important? - Canadians believe in religion far fewer than anyone else - Canadians are secular - separate our church from state - Why is it so important that we would have freedom of religion - Society structures organization completely o Marriage o Most of the social relationships are predicated upon this structure of ‘marriage’ o Education system, it is founded upon being at school during non-Sabbath periods. o Statutory holidays are predicated upon Christian belief system. o Underlying religiosity to our society o Even the constitution itself indicates a religious structure “power of God” o Where the charter might deviate from some people’s view of religion  Individual ideology  INDIVIDUAL and not based on collectivity 2. DEFINITIONS a. Conscience R. v. Morgentaler [1998] 1 SCR 30 MADAM JUSTICE WILSON  “Personal morality, which is not founded in religion … conscientious beliefs which are not religiously motivated” - Struck down the abortion laws in Canada - No more abortion laws since Morgentaler - Madam Justice Wilson - Regulation of Abortion was a denial of freedom of religion and conscience - This is the only case in which we get any idea of what conscience means. - Belief structure that there are things which are right and things which are wrong Angie © McMaster University 1 Winter 2014 Lecture at: 03/10/2014 - Morality is not predicated on a religious view of the world - Atheist would fall under freedom of conscience b. Religion Syndicat Northcrest v. Ameslem [2004] 2 SCR 551 “Particular and comprehensive system of faith and worship. It is about freely and deeply held personal convictions or beliefs connected to an individual’s spiritual faith and integrally linked to his or her self-definition and spiritual fulfillment, the practices of which allow individuals to foster a connection with the divine or with the subject or object of that spiritual faith” - Religion is a religion - Trying to get away from what ‘counts’as religion - Defining religion in a broad way, but it highlights a couple of things  INDIVIDUAL BELIEFS  SELF-FULLFILMENT  CONNECTION TO THESE BELIEFS  Rights are about individual claims - Protecting certain activities that link the individual to the action 3. SCOPE OF FREEDOM OF RELIGION R. v. Big M Drug Mart (contains three things) - Sunday Shopping laws a. Entertain such beliefs as a person chooses b. Declare such beliefs openly and without fear of hindrance or reprisal c. Manifest such beliefs by worship and practice or teaching and dissemination - It is not just about the protection of religious
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