Judging Jehovah's Witnesses : Religious Persecution and the Dawn of the Rights Revolution (Reprint)


Judging Jehovah's Witnesses : Religious Persecution and the Dawn of the Rights Revolution (Reprint)

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  • 製本 Paperback:紙装版/ペーパーバック版
  • 言語 ENG,ENG
  • 商品コード 9780700611829
  • DDC分類 323

Full Description

While millions of Americans were defending liberty against the Nazis, liberty was under vicious attack at home. One of the worst outbreaks of religious persecution in U.S. history occurred during World War II when Jehovah's Witnesses were intimidated, beaten, and even imprisoned for refusing to salute the flag or serve in the armed forces. Determined to claim their First Amendment rights, Jehovah's Witnesses waged a tenacious legal campaign that led to twenty-three Supreme Court rulings between 1938 and 1946. Now Shawn Peters has written the first complete account of the personalities, events, and institutions behind those cases, showing that they were more than vindication for unpopular beliefs-they were also a turning point in the nation's constitutional commitment to individual rights. Peters begins with the story of William Gobitas, a Jehovah's Witness whose children refused to salute the flag at school. He follows this famous case to the Supreme Court, where he captures the intellectual sparring between Justices Frankfurter and Stone over individual liberties; then he describes the aftermath of the Court's ruling against Gobitas, when angry mobs savagely assaulted Jehovah's Witnesses in hundreds of communities across America. "Judging Jehovah's Witnesses" tells how persecution--much of it directed by members of patriotic organizations like the American Legion--touched the lives of Witnesses of all ages; why the Justice Department and state officials ignored the Witnesses' pleas for relief; and how the ACLU and liberal clergymen finally stepped forward to help them. Drawing on interviews with Witnesses and extensive research in ACLU archives, he examines the strategies that beleaguered Witnesses used to combat discrimination and goes beyond the familiar Supreme Court rulings by analyzing more obscure lower court decisions as well. By vigorously pursuing their cause, the Witnesses helped to inaugurate an era in which individual and minority rights emerged as matters of concern for the Supreme Court and foreshadowed events in the civil rights movement. Like the classics "Gideon's Trumpet" and "Simple Justice," "Judging Jehovah's Witnesses" vividly narrates a moving human drama while reminding us of the true meaning of our Constitution and the rights it protects.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments                                    ix
Introduction: A Turning Point for Religious 1 (18)
Jehovah is My God and the Bible Is My Creed 19 (27)
Felix's Fall-of-France Opinion 46 (26)
They're Traitors---the Supreme Court Says So 72 (24)
A Shocking Episode of Intolerance in American 96 (28)
Religious Persecutions Under the Guise of Law 124(29)
Starvation into Patriotism 153(25)
Boundless Courage and Unending Perseverance 178(25)
Fighting Words 203(27)
Blot Removed 230(30)
A Question of Personal Liberty 260(25)
We Will Obey God First, Last, and All the Time 285(16)
Notes 301(26)
Bibliography 327(6)
Index 333