Why Tolerate Religion, Again? A Reply to Michael McConnell

16 Pages Posted: 11 May 2016 Last revised: 14 Jul 2016

Date Written: May 8, 2016


This essay discusses a lengthy review by Professor Michael McConnell of the Stanford Law School in the Yale Law Journal to my 2013 book WHY TOLERATE RELIGION? (Princeton University Press). I identify two important objections that Prof. McConnell raises, but also identify eight different mistakes or misunderstandings that mar other parts of the review. I conclude by taking Prof. McConnell to task for several rhetorical cheap shots that, together with the other errors, suggests that his essay was more a partisan brief than a scholarly evaluation of the arguments. Most surprisingly, the fact that Professor McConnell, in his lengthy review, never actually responds to my book's central thesis -- namely, that the inequality between religious and non-religious claims of conscience is not morally defensible -- suggests that there may really be no serious argument on the other side.

Suggested Citation

Leiter, Brian, Why Tolerate Religion, Again? A Reply to Michael McConnell (May 8, 2016). U of Chicago, Public Law Working Paper No. 580, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2777208 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2777208

Brian Leiter (Contact Author)

University of Chicago ( email )

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Chicago, IL 60637
United States

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