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Post Reply Should churches remain tax exempt?
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45 / M / WA
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Posted 1/25/17 , edited 1/25/17
NO! Hold to standard? The last thing Americans want is a government official dictating a religious standard. Removing a churche's tax exemption because of political involvement is simply a means of silencing political opponents and should be opposed. Parishioners already pay taxes; If churches were taxed the government would simply spend more ...and still cry about not having enough money. Ideally churches should be non political but if they choose to be that is fine as well ...and retain their tax exemp status. Need more money? Stop funding Planned Barrenhood, stop throwing billions at trains no one rides, don't allow people to spend food stamp money on soda, kill 100 useless bloated federal agencies - hundreds of Billions could be saved every year, reduce the White House staff by 80%, cut inflated government salaries, stop funding universities, practice zero based budgeting for all government spending ....
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Posted 1/25/17
Personally, I say no they shouldn't because of religion. But if they register & can do enough charitable work to prove they are a non profit organization then they should keep the tax exemption.
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Posted 6/26/17 , edited 6/26/17
Supreme Court ruled in favor of a religious school to be able to use tax money to make its playgrounds safer. I don't think churches should give money to the government but that shouldn't be a reason discriminate against it going the other way.
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53 / M / In
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Posted 6/26/17
Taxed no But I do feel they should be held to the highest accountability standers and be regularly audited to show where every single penny goes
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Posted 6/26/17

mxdan wrote:


I think we shouldn't, mainly because good NPOs is another word for NPOs I personally like, while bad NPOs is another word for the ones I don't like. They're far from perfect (just like most societal institutions), but I happen to like churches a little. Since my opinion is the only one that matters, we should start selectively taxing all the NPOs that push for things I think are useless instead. If you like some of them, too bad. Sounds like a raw deal? It's the same argument you made, so you're in favor of it.

Except that's not really how it works. If you think churches are bad, and churchgoers think "secularhumanism.org" is bad, which one gets banned? In a democracy, the one with fewer supporters. Right now in the USA that probably means "secularhumanism.org" although maybe it'll mean churches in twenty years. But this doesn't have to happen if it's illegal to ban any of them and that rule is respected because everyone understands that it might be protecting their beliefs tomorrow. This is the reason why the principle of separation of church and state exists in the first place, because its' absence was abused by church authorities to suppress churches with beliefs they found objectionable.

Implying that churches are useless or harmful by raising the meta-ethical question of what churches actually do is no different from the church authority who says that all religions except their own are detrimental because they lead straight to hell. The Christian state that restricts all religions but Christianity, the 'nondenominational state' that restricts all forms of organized religion, and the the atheist state that restricts all religion all have in common that they impose a legal penalty on belief systems other than their own, and in effect enforce their beliefs on the populace. And they all have in common strident advocates who will say "yeah, but my belief system, unlike those other ones you're comparing it to, is correct!" This is something that critics of religion sometimes fail to pick up on...or perhaps choose to conveniently ignore.

The reason we should never tax churches, at least not on any unique standard, is really, unbelievably simple - self-defense of our own beliefs and the social structures that support them. Nice strawman though; considering Jesus's emphasis on caring for the poor that 82 billion dollars for free college ought to be pretty damn tempting to the faithful.
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