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23 Animal L. 355 (2016-2017)
Three Hots and a Cot and a Lot of Talk: Discussing Federal Rights-Based Avenues for Prisoners Access to Vegan Meals

handle is hein.journals/anim23 and id is 369 raw text is: 








   THREE HOTS AND A COT AND A LOT OF TALK:1
   DISCUSSING FEDERAL RIGHTS-BASED AVENUES
       FOR PRISONER ACCESS TO VEGAN MEALS

                                   By
                          David  B. Rosengard*


       Vegan prisoners face obstacles in accessing meals congruent with their
   beliefs, but it may be possible to assert the right to vegan meals while incar-
   cerated via a number of constitutional and statutory provisions. Focusing
   specifically on the federal legal landscape, this Article acts as a road map to
   those options. First, this Article discusses the scope of relevant religious free
   exercise jurisprudence-and its utility for prisoners who are vegan for relig-
   ious reasons. Second, this Article explores the extent to which an equal pro-
   tection approach may  provide vegan prisoners with a  viable route to
   securing appropriate meals. Third, this Article discusses possible applica-
   tion of the Eighth Amendment's cruel and unusual punishment provision
   to vegan prisoners who are denied the appropriate diet. Fourth, it gives an
   overview of the Prison Litigation Reform Act's impact on litigating these
   issues.
   The objectives are threefold: to summarize the relevant jurisprudence, to
   highlight new legal developments, and to suggest creative legal theories ad-
   dressing the needs of vegan prisoners. In doing so, the Article seeks to sup-
   port lawyers confronting these issues and benefit vegan prisoners.

      I. INTRODUCTION.            ................................. 356
      II. RELIGIOUS  FREE   EXERCISE   ANALYSIS   ............... 358
         A. Scope of the First Amendment ........................ 358
              1. A Belief, Sincerely Held .......................... 359
         B. The Nature of Belief Religious vs. Secular ............. 362
              1. Dogmatically Religious Vegan Beliefs .............. 362
              2. Idiosyncratically Religious Vegan Beliefs ............ 364
              3. Religious Vegan Beliefs Beyond Traditional
                Religions.........................   ............. 366
             4. Lower Court Applications of Seeger and Welsh ...... 369
         C. First Amendment  Considerations Particular to Prisoners . 374

   1 SocIAL DISTORTION, Prison Bound, on PRISON BouND (Restless Records 1988).
   * @ David B. Rosengard earned his B.A. in History and Gender Studies at Clare-
mont McKenna  College, and a J.D. and LL.M. in Animal Law from Lewis & Clark Law
School. During his time at Lewis & Clark Law School, David was part of the Animal
Law Clinic, and served as Co-Director of Lewis & Clark's Student Animal Legal Defense
Fund chapter and as an Animal Law Review Editor in Chief. David is grateful for the
Animal Law Clinic's work on behalf of individual vegan prisoners and its broader in-
quiries into issues faced by vegan prisoners, both of which provided the seeds from
which this Article grew.


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