A Comment on Religious Convictions and Lawmaking

Professor Kent Greenawalt’s Cooley Lectures on Religious Convictions and Lawmaking are fresh, honest, and thoughtful. They offer some troubling questions for liberal democratic theorists (Greenawalt names Bruce Ackerman and John Rawls as representatives of the class) who argue that good citizens and officials should set their religious co~victions aside when they deal with political questions. Greenawalt contends that religious liberal democrats are not committed to such a program of self-denial – that sometimes (though not always) political judgments can rest on religious convictions. I think he is right but too modest about the implications of his thesis.