Other Free Encyclopedias » Law Library - American Law and Legal Information » Notable Trials and Court Cases - 1981 to 1988

Goldman v. Weinberger - Significance, The Government's Interest In Defense, A Passionate Dissent, Impact

court petitioner regulations force


S. Simcha Goldman


Caspar W. Weinberger, U.S. Secretary of Defense, et al.

Petitioner's Claim

That the U.S. Air Force regulations on uniform dress preventing petitioner from wearing a yarmulke while on duty violate his First Amendment right to free exercise of religion, and that the Supreme Court reverse the U.S. Court of Appeals prior ruling that strict enforcement of Air Force regulations is permissible.

Chief Lawyer for Petitioner

Nathan Lewis

Chief Lawyer for Respondent

Kathryn A. Oberly

Justices for the Court

Warren E. Burger, Lewis F. Powell, Jr., William H. Rehnquist (writing for the Court), John Paul Stevens, Byron R. White

Justices Dissenting

Harry A. Blackmun, William J. Brennan, Jr., Thurgood Marshall, Sandra Day O'Connor


Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

25 March 1986


Upheld the lower court's ruling that the First Amendment does not require the U.S. Air Force to allow an Orthodox Jew to wear a yarmulke, which violates uniform regulations, while on duty.

Related Cases

  • Goldman v. Secretary of Defense, 530 F.Supp. 12 (1981).
  • Church of Lukumi Babalu Aye, Inc. v. City of Hialeah, 508 U.S. 520 (1993).

Further Readings

  • Evans, Bette Novit. Interpreting the Free Exercise of Religion: The Constitution and American Pluralism. Chapel Hill, NC: University of North Carolina Press, 1997.
  • Rotunda & Nowak, Treatise on Constitutional Law: Substance and Procedure, 2nd ed. Vol. 4-13, Chapter 21.
  • Silverglate, Harvey A. "Paying the Piper Who Protects Our Freedoms." The National Law Journal, April 29, 1996, p. A17.
Grand Rapids School District v. Ball - Significance, Separating Public And Religious Education, Taking The Lemon Test, The End Of A Symbolic Union [next] [back] Globe Newspaper Co. v. Superior Court for the County of Norfolk - Significance, The Right To Privacy Vs. The Public's Right To Know, Protecting Minors From Trauma

User Comments

Your email address will be altered so spam harvesting bots can't read it easily.
Hide my email completely instead?

Cancel or