Dieter Witschen: Was kann ‚negative Religionsfreiheit‛ meinen? Semantische Anmerkungen

The right to religious freedom can not only come into conflict with other rights, but there can also exist an immanent conflict within this right. Such a conflict is the one between negative and positive religious freedom. Before it can be solved as regards content, one has to realize that by the opposition “negative versus positive religious freedom” something completely different can be meant. In a semantic analysis at least eight different meanings of the term ‘negative religious freedom’ can be discerned. It should, however, be noted that distinctions can be made in this respect whether specific rights of the person entitled are meant, or whether, by claiming this right, consequences are connected for others, who want to positively exercise this right.

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