May It Please The Court

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Respecting Religions Results In Similar Kirpan Rulings, Just By Different Words

MIPTC isn't licensed in Canada, where the rule of law is founded on Napoleonic Code, which is supposedly different than the basis for the rule of law in the United States, with the notable exception of Louisiana, which adopts many elements of its law from the French Code.  Even though the foundation for the laws that rule our two countries differs, the result is frequently the same. 

A decision just handed down in the Supreme Court of Canada is a good example of the similarities in the two approaches to the law, although the wording is much different.  For example, you can compare this Canadian decision with a 1995 Ninth Circuit decision, which also allows students to wear Kirpans (a ceremonial dagger) as long as the blade is dull, it is sewn tightly to the sheath, and worn underneath clothing, reasonable restrictions that don't burden the First Amendment.  There are other similar results based on U.S. laws.  In both countries, it is legal for Sikhs to carry a Kirpan in school, and both countries reached the same decision practically the same way and based on the same protection of freedom of religion.  In accordance with their beliefs, Sikhs have been carrying Kirpans since 1699 (scroll down to the 5Ks).

The motto of the United Sikhs is "Recognize the Human Race As One."  Given a recent article in this month's National Geographic, I'm inclined to agree. 

Posted by J. Craig Williams on Tuesday, February 28, 2006 at 13:49 Comments (0)


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