Separation of church & state?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Blue Velvet, Mar 11, 2006.

  1. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

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    #1
    US religious charities win $2.15bn in state grants



    http://www.guardian.co.uk/usa/story/0,,1728616,00.html
     
  2. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #2
    Ah yes, find a way to fit the facts to the policy once the policy has been decided -- science and logic be damned!
     
  3. iGary Guest

    iGary

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    #3
    Meh, I don't know what to think of this - it has been going on forever, this is not just a Dubya thing.

    Most charities (OK, a good portion) are faith-baised. Do we cut their funding just for the sake of religion and deny the people that need help help?

    Don't know where I stand on this one .
     
  4. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #4
    I don't have a problem with religious charities getting government money, but I want to see results. And at this point I don't trust Bush to be putting the policy ahead of the facts.
     
  5. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #5
    i do have a problem with it. i often keep my mouth shut about my tax dollars being spent on things i don't like, but not this time. the separation must be maintained, and as an atheist i think it's crap.

    and mac, this is an ideological play, because inherent in the funding is the right-wing idea that the gov't is bloated and privitization is required. further, there are always non-affiliated NGOs around to do the work.

    if an individual wants to fund a church group, let him, but that's as far as it should go.
     
  6. tristan macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    If it's the government giving money to Pat Robertson so that he can tell the people of New Orleans that Katrina was God's punishment, then yeah, I'm not down with that.

    But if these are competitive grants targeted at social problems, I don't see an issue.
     
  7. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #7
    Well coming from Bush, I'm sure it's a head-fake to get more power to religion and more religion into government; but from a different administration, would you object to Habitat for Humanity having their budget upped with some federal funding? I wouldn't. They do good things for people and aren't active as a political force.

    I want the money to go where it gets results. For instance, I don't like the premise behind AA, but if it sobers people up I'm not as bothered by it; particularly if that saves the nation more money later on for things like alcohol-related illnesses, drunk-driving accidents, and incarceration for a problem that could have been nipped in the bud so to speak.

    What I don't trust is that Bush has any reason for funding religious groups over secular ones other than the political calculus that tells Rove that the religious right is a crucial voting bloc for the Republics, and pandering to them can get otherwise-unelectable righties into office.
     
  8. EGT macrumors 68000

    EGT

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    #8
    *claps* :)
     
  9. Sedulous macrumors 68000

    Sedulous

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    #9
    Whether or not the "founding fathers" intended to bar a religious role in the government, does anyone here think it is actually a good idea to have the "pope" (or any other religious dogma) dictating laws to the U.S.? I don't think so.

    I'm very offended that the government is dumping money into the collection plate. This is all we need, federal funding to make more brain washed religious nut cases. Hey, why don't we just make a law banning science and reason? Let's cut funding to universities and research and increase funding for religion!?!

    As MLK said: "It is a sad fact that because of comfort and complacency our proneness to adjust to injustice, the western nations that initiated so much of the revolutionary spirit of the modern world now have become the arch anti-revolutionaries."
     
  10. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #10
    Not all religious causes are bad, as has been mentioned, but the jump is telling. Instead of going to where it might actually help, for all we know it could be going into abstinence only education or ID. If it was going to more worthy, nonpartisan causes like helping the poor and the sick it would be fine, but this part scares me:
    :confused:
     
  11. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #11
    Not good.
     
  12. XNine macrumors 68040

    XNine

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    #12
    I wonder if any of these organizations help out in primarily "black" neighborhoods, or if its all for the white man?
     
  13. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    #13
    Oh, come on, this is money that funds organizations that can legally not hire or serve those whom they disagree with. It only increases the power of churches in this country at the expense of federally funded programs that should, in theory, be based on sound science and equality.
     
  14. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #14
    Agreed Ugg. That is my major problem with this. If you're taking my tax dollars, you better not be discriminating against anybody. But these groups are allowed to. I say- not with my money.
     
  15. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #15
    There are two separate questions here in my mind. The first is whether Bush is basing this on the merits of a program, or if he is using it to pander to his base, and to increase the influence of religion in government. I think we'd likely agree that, yes, that is the case.

    The second is whether religious charities should ever get government money, even if their program is as effective as any non-religious program. As mentioned earlier, I would be hard-pressed to find any downside to allowing Habitat for Humanity the resources to build a few more houses for the poor each year.
     
  16. zimv20 macrumors 601

    zimv20

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    #16
    charities like these are more grey area. ideologically, i say no. but practically, i can see the argument. i still feel it's more appropriate for the fed to offer such programs.

    btw, according to wiki:
     
  17. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #17
    I just don't see why it is inherently bad for a religious charity that performs the same function with the same efficiency rate as a secular charity to receive a boost from the government. I prefer results-based evaluations, not philosophically-based ones.

    I certainly understand that Bush's 'faith based initiatives' are nothing more than code words to make the religious right happy, and the money will likely do little good for the poor on a per-dollar basis. But on a theoretical basis, any charity that produces results should be encouraged IMHO.
     

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