chevron-down Created with Sketch Beta.
December 05, 2022 RAPID RESPONSE

Dobbs: What's Religion Got to Do with It?

In the Dobbs decision overturning Roe v. Wade, the majority opinion found that, in light of the state's interest in fetal life as "potential life," and the absence of a clear basis in the Constitution for a right to abortion, state regulation in this area is limited only by "rational basis" analysis. For fifty years, abortion has been a hot point issue for contending political views, but until now relatively little attention has been given to the religious freedom implications of government associating itself with a particular view as to when life begins. Remarkably, in a term in which religious freedom and religious liberty was a theme of several cases, neither the majority opinion nor the dissent in Dobbs touched on those implications. Does state regulation of abortion that adopts a position associated with a particular religious view of when life begins impact the religious freedom of religious communities that have a different viewpoint on the beginning of life, particularly religious minority communities? What are the operative principles of determining when regulation that correlates with religious practice or belief (as much regulation, such as prohibitions on murder or theft, does) crosses the line to become a violation of religious freedom? Join us as we discuss abortion from a religious freedom perspective.



  • Rahmah A. Abdulaleem, Executive Director, KARAMAH; Co-Chair, Religious Freedom Committee, ABA Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice

Co-Sponsors: ABA Center for Public Interest Law, ABA Commission on Sexual Orientation and Gender IdentityABA Commission on Women in the ProfessionABA Criminal Justice Section, ABA Division for Public Education, ABA Government and Public Sector Lawyers DivisionABA Standing Committee on Pro Bono and Public Service, ABA Senior Lawyers Division


Religious Freedom and Abortion | University of Virginia School of Law Public Law and Legal Theory Research Paper Series 2022-74

Reproductive freedom is religious freedom | The Freethinker

Abortion bans trample on the religious freedom of Muslims, too | San Francisco Chronicle

Open Letter: Why Muslims Must Oppose the Abortion Ban | Muslim Girl

VIDEO: Weaponization of Women: Working Towards Inalienable Rights | Muslim Public Affairs Council 2022 Convention

Americans United for Separation of Church and State amicus brief in Dobbs

Support CRSJ

CRSJ provides free webinars and resources for legal professionals and advocates nationwide and relies on generous donor support and volunteer service. Your charitable gift ensures that we continue to address the deepening crises in our collective pursuit of advancing law and justice. Thank you!

Give Generously – Donate Today