Cantwell v. Connecticut: Court Strikes Down Licenses for Religious Solicitation Hot

Cantwell v. Connecticut: Court Strikes Down Licenses for Religious Solicitation

Cantwell v. Connecticut

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Decided: Cantwell v. Connecticut — The U.S. Supreme Court rules that a statute requiring a license to solicit for religious purposes constitutes a prior restraint that vests the state with excessive power in determining which groups must obtain a license.

Justice Owen Roberts writes in the majority opinion:

"In the realm of religious faith, and in that of political belief, sharp differences arise. In both fields the tenets of one man may seem the rankest error to his neighbor.

To persuade others to his own point of view, the pleader, as we know, at times, resorts to exaggeration, to vilification of men who have been, or are, prominent in church or state, and even to false statement.

But the people of this nation have ordained in the light of history, that, in spite of the probabilities of excesses and abuses, these liberties are in the long view, essential to enlightened opinion and right conduct on the part of the citizens of a democracy."

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