Wednesday, May 30, 2018
Church and State
Religion and politics are inseparable. Both are systems of social control, evolved to limit certain individualistic behaviors by defining them as deviance: the immoral and the illegal largely overlap. It follows that every sermon is political speech: no clear line ever has separated Church and State. Religion has been integral to American politics since the arrival of the Puritans, entangled in every major political debate. Inevitably, a contribution to a church is a political contribution.
Property tax exemptions for religious organizations deprive local governments of revenue, subsidizing church members at the expense of everybody else, irrespective of need; and the deductibility of donations lets individuals use government funds to advance sectarian ideologies. Granted, the only feasible path to reform is to make all charitable contributions non-deductible, but given the political abuse of 503(c) corporations and similar manipulations, the time for genuine "tax simplification" has arrived. Donors will have to give out of genuine altruism; religious donors, perhaps, to avoid joining godless progressives, and anybody else who doubts their "truth," in Hell.