Follett v. Town of McCornick: Distributing Religious Materials Doesn't Require a License

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Decided: Follett v. Town of McCormick - The Supreme Court will rule that people who earn a living buy selling or otherwise distributing religious materials should not be required to pay the same licensing fees that are required of those who sell secular materials.

Justice Douglas writes in the majority opinion:

"Preachers of the more orthodox faiths are not engaged in commercial undertakings because they are dependent on their calling for a living. Whether needy or affluent, they avail themselves of the constitutional privilege of a 'free exercise' of their religion when they enter the pulpit to proclaim their faith.

The priest or preacher is as fully protected in his function as the parishioners are in their worship. A flat license tax on that constitutional privilege would be as odious as the early 'taxes on knowledge' which the framers of the First Amendment sought to outlaw."

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