Judge Rules in Favor of Monks

An update on a story we highlighted in "In All Things" last year:

Monks at St. Joseph Abbey near Covington can sue for the right to sell handcrafted caskets to the public without a license from the Louisiana Board of Embalmers and Funeral Directors, a federal judge in New Orleans has decided.

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U.S. District Judge Stanwood Duval's ruling, filed Friday, set the stage for a June 6 trial, during which lawyers representing the Abbey will attempt to prove that restricting casket sales to state-licensed funeral directors amounts to unconstitutional economic protectionism.

"This ruling is a vindication of what we have been saying all along: Economic liberty is for everyone, including the monks of the Abbey," Abbot Justin Brown said in a statement issued by the Virginia-based Institute of Justice, who is arguing on behalf of the Abbey.

H/t to reader Jeff Landry for the link.

Tim Reidy

 

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Jim McCrea
7 years 11 months ago
I'll bet that the Trappists of New Mellary Abbey in Iowa were secretly funding the La Bd of Embalmenrs etc.  Can't have competition when it comes to hand-made caskets!

) : > ]]
Adam Rasmussen
7 years 11 months ago
I wonder why the monks don't just get a license.
7 years 11 months ago
"I wonder why the monks don't just get a license."

If I recall the article correctly, the license required is a fudneral director's license, which involves classes and an apprenticeship that the abbey cannot afford.

I wonder whether the law would prohibit the abbey from selling to funeral directors as a wholesaler.  What they would lose at retail they could probably make up in volume, especially if they went national with it.  I can't believe that all casket manufacturers are all licensed funeral directors; that would be like requiring all carpenters to be real estate agents.

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