This is in response to Wi-Tom's assertion that BrianW is forcing his views on other people. It's the other way around.

The implication is that the religious beliefs and moral values of the parents of school children are not protected by the Constitution. They are.

The principles:

1. Liberty, as in the right to control the education of one's children.
2. Liberty, as in the right to free exercise of religion.

The Amish argued that compulsory public school past 8th grade socialized their children in ways that offended their religious principles and violated their rights as parents. They won -- Wisconsin v. Yoder, 1972.

Oregon refused to make peyote legal for practitioners of certain strains of Native American religion. Oregon found a friend in Justice Scalia, who upheld the peyote ban, announcing a new doctrine -- expressly not extended to the Amish schooling situation -- known as the "generally applicable" rule -- peyote is prohibited to everyone, therefore the prohibition does not burden the Native American's right to free exercise of religion -- Employment Division v. Smith, 1990.

The current Supreme Court is itching to over-rule Scalia's rule. They came within a hair of doing it in a recent unanimous decision. All nine, from Breyer and Sotomayor to Alito and Thomas. Very likely Roberts, too, but he wanted a decision on the narrowest possible grounds.

Fulton v. City of Philadelphia (2021)
https://www.law.cornell.edu/supremec...9-123_CONCUR_5

The City contracted with Plaintiff Catholic Social Services -- for more than fifty years -- and others, to provide foster care services, including "certifying" applicants as suitable candidates for foster parenthood. CSS certified single gay applicants but refused to certify partners in same sex marriages, on religious grounds -- CSS holds the religious belief that marriage is a sacred bond between a man and a woman -- but this violated the city's non-discrimination guidelines. CSS's contract was cancelled for that reason. The city's contract letting procedures allowed for some official to grant exemptions to the guidelines, but CSS was refused an exemption.

Held: a law is not "generally applicable" -- the Scalia rule -- if it invites the government to consider the particular reasons for a person’s conduct by creating a mechanism for individualized exemptions. Where such a system of individual exemptions exists, the government may not refuse to extend that system to cases of religious hardship without a found to be compelling, determined after an inquiry by the most rigorous standard -- strict scrutiny. "A government policy can survive strict scrutiny only if it advances compelling interests and is narrowly tailored to achieve those interests."

So the decision on the application of the Scalia rule was unanimous -- by its own terms, the rule was not applicable; if an exemption was available, CSS was constitutionally entitled to one. Chief Justice Roberts did the conservative thing by deciding on the narrowest possible grounds, like he did with Obamacare. But all of the "Republican Bloc" of the Court wanted to go further, and S can the Scalia rule entirely. Because it's nonsensical. Congress tried twice, once led by Chuck Shumer, and next time by Orrin Hatch and Edward Kennedy, to enact statutes as a substitute for the Consitutional law Scalia did away with, like they want to do now with abortion; but Congress speaks with no authority as to what the Constitution means.

Meanwhile it will continue to occur to other cities, and all government entities, including schools -- "Philadelphia lost because they offered exemptions; eliminate exemptions, problem solved."

The other Republican bloc justices, and possibly Roberts too, believe that the exemption is a requirement, not an option. It already is a requirement when it comes to schools; an action that is a violation of either right cannot be justified unless there is a compelling reason, and the action is narrowly tailored to minimize the violation. That may require the availability of an exemption, and separate classes, books, restrooms, whatever. Depends on the nature of the claim in each case. What you can't do is to simply set the parents' rights aside, without due process. The schools must accomodate the parents, if possible; not the other way around. And the courts are the final authority, not "democracy".