Vincent Phillip Muñoz, Tocqueville Associate Professor of Religion & Public Life; Concurrent Associate Professor of Law, University of Notre Dame
Lecture One: Justice Scalia was Right in Smith: Why the Original Meaning of the Free Exercise Clause Does Not Require Religious Exemptions
In his first lecture, Professor Muñoz challenges the reigning orthodoxy among originalist scholars and conservative jurists that the First Amendment protects religious liberty by providing religious exemptions. Understanding the Founders’ natural rights social compact constitutionalism, Professor Muñoz contends, leads to a more limited, but more thorough, protection for the free exercise of religion.
Lecture Two: Constructing the First Amendment’s Religion Clauses: A New Originalist Approach to Religious Liberty and the Separation of Church and State
In his second lecture, Professor Muñoz provides new originalist constructions of the First Amendment Religion Clauses. The Founders’ First Amendment, he argues, does not mandate state “neutrality” toward religion, but rather protection for our inalienable right of religious free exercise and the prohibition of relationships of privilege and control between church and state.
Lecture Three: Should We Adopt the Founders’ Natural Rights Constitutionalism of Religious Liberty?
In his final lecture, Professor Muñoz discusses the case for and against adopting the Founders’ understanding of religious free exercise and the disassociation of church and state. Are the Founders’ principles of religious freedom compelling? Would they make for good constitutional law today? Professors Drakeman and Moreland respond.