Supreme Court likely to grant right-wing Christians' taxpayer money grab
Reading the Bible (Shutterstock)

On Thursday, Vox reported that the Supreme Court is about to take up Carson v. Makin, a case that could force taxpayers in the state of Maine to pay to send children to religious schools.

"Typically, the Court’s 'religious liberty' docket involves laws and policies that prohibit religious parties from acting in a way they believe is consistent with their faith," wrote Ian Millhiser. "But Carson is not like these cases. It claims the state of Maine must spend existing tax revenue from its secular residents to pay the private school tuition of some religious students." Furthermore, noted Millhiser, "Notably, the state could also wind up having to pay for hate speech in the process. According to Maine’s brief, both of the plaintiff families in Carson want the state to pay for tuition at schools that discriminate against LGBTQ students and teachers" — including a school that makes teachers sign an agreement that "God recognize[s] homosexuals and other deviants as perverted."

According to Millhiser, the plaintiffs in the case are using an absurd comparison as the basis for their argument.

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"'In the 19th century, Maine’s public schools expelled students for adhering to their faith,' they claim, citing one example of a Catholic student expelled for not completing lessons off a Protestant bible. Now, according to the brief, Maine is committing a similarly repugnant sin against religious people by refusing to pay state residents’ tuition at private religious schools," wrote Millhiser. "Under this reasoning, there is no relevant difference between denying a public education to a Catholic student and refusing to pay for private religious education."

The court, which now has a 6-3 conservative majority, has made recent decisions expanding requirements for various states to fund religious schools, most notably in Montana in 2020. This comes as the court is also considering a closely-watched abortion case in Mississippi that could overturn Roe v. Wade.

You can read more here.

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