Unconstitutional Entanglements: The Religious Right, the Federal Government, and Abstinence Education in the Schools
Naomi R. Shatz
Zalkind Duncan and Bernstein LLP
Yale Journal of Law & Feminism, Vol. 19, p. 495, 2008
This article argues that current federal funding for abstinence-only sex education violates the Establishment Clause. Previous establishment clause challenges to the abstinence-only education system focused either on overt religious messages included in curricula or on federal funding going to religious groups to teach abstinence-only education. These challenges have ignored the religious history of abstinence-only education and the particular religious values that are endorsed by even the allegedly "secular" curricula. This article demonstrates that the current funding of abstinence-only education violates the Supreme Court's test for religious neutrality as set forth in Lemon v. Kurtzmann.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 37
Keywords: abstinence, sex education, establishment clause, first amendment, Christianity, religious right
Date posted: December 28, 2009