chapter  6
Religion and the State in the United States at the Turn of the Twenty-first Century
Pages 32

The right to freedom of religion has a long and familiar history in the United States.2 Although not specifically addressed in the original US Constitution itself, with the exception of a provision banning religious tests for public office,3 freedom of religion was identified from the beginning of American constitutional history as a foundational fundamental right by the First Amendment to the Constitution, which provides: ‘Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof’.4