What Is Truth? Setting the Bounds of Justiciability in Religiously-Inflected Fact Disputes
49 Pages Posted: 13 Sep 2013
Date Written: September 1, 2010
This article evaluates the constitutional and evidentiary status of religiously-inflected beliefs about matters of fact. Specifically, may a court, under the First Amendment, engage in factfinding on an issue as to which a party has a religiously-based belief? I show that that this is not an academic question, that the caselaw is in conflict, and that the ramifications of the possible constitutional rules are significant. I illustrate the stakes with analysis of cases involving a "religious insanity defense," which requires the court to make a finding of fact that the defendant's religious beliefs were false.
Keywords: Free Exercise, First Amendment, insanity, ballard
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation