Church and State – battle on the playground

This morning SCOTUS rules that the Missouri church should not have been denied a grant for recycled rubber playground surface for their playground.

The concern it seems was over the old church and state argument.

To me, this should not have been a concern as it was not an area of political influence.

Perhaps some of the questions of importance in the grant process should have been to determine if the public funds would benefit the public, and not just the kids in the daycare. If the playground was for the sole use of the public, it moves up the list. If it is only for the daycare members’ use, then it could still be considered, but after all of the public playgrounds have been dealt with.

Of course this could be rendered moot if the church was paying it’s fair share of taxes. If that had been the case, the only issue would have been, does this funding lead to any conflicts of interest or promotion of faith? If not, then why not.

Separation of church and state was only intended to make sure that neither side could influence the other. Sadly Christianity is unable to internalize the fact that this is not a Christian nation. We are to be a free nation, capable of enjoying any faith that we wish.

3 thoughts on “Church and State – battle on the playground

  1. There are all sorts of non profits that avoid taxation.
    The Tides Foundation comes to mind.

    I see the author ignores the philanthropy that churches encourage to help with food and clothing and other emergency relief, an obvious benefit for the communities that they are in.

    Perhaps the separation of church and state was to keep government from interfering, from stacking the deck. And it's hostility towards religion today is contrary to the hands off approach the Founders intended.

  2. Perhaps all non-profits should pay taxes (even at a 50% discount). Currently they only pay payroll taxes, correct? You and I and the rest of the country should not be subsiding them.

    No Roger, the author is cognizant and appreciative of the charitable works of the churches..

    The churches need to pay their fair share. Certainly provide deductions for their philanthropy as it is well deserved. Let's face it, churches have become big business. Not all of course, but enough to make it well notable. I was raised with the church leaders living very modestly. Are you aware that the average megachurch pastor is making 167k a year (I believe that it was a University of Tulsa study that revealed that)? That is more than triple that of the average person in the US. Notice I did not suggest a vow of poverty, just modesty.

    The church and state separation is pretty easy to understand. It is the western Christians that seem to not get it. It is to keep the government from banning religions, dictating which religions one should be in, and that churches were not to meddle in political proceedings. The church members can certainly have political voices, but the churches can not be political from the pulpit.

    Unfortunately, politicians do not have the balls to take a stand to protect the government from religion. The judiciary only does what it MUST.

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