Government & religion



Re: John Nielson’s letter to P.M. 1-15-13 “A church isn’t an individual” – According to J. Nielson, the 1st Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects religion, so much so that the “government cannot interfere with churches in any fashion.”  Mr. Nielson evidently thinks the church is a law unto itself.  I don’t give a hoot for that viewpoint.  Some taxing authorities are evidently on Mr. Nielson’s side.  He wants us to know that the church isn’t an “individual”, so it would have to be subject to business taxes, and businesses are only taxed on profit.  By definition of profit by taxing authorities churches don’t make a profit so tax on churches would amount to zero.  It seems there is always a way of getting to do what it not right.  The tax experts I read about say that churches most certainly are businesses.  Their definition of business is an organization that sells services or products.  Churches sell hundreds of these, even including indulgences. (Some of these services may be intangible.)

Good tax attorneys say that if churches were taxed it would reduce a person’s personal tax by 50%, finance a national health insurance program, and it would bring in more than a trillion dollars in revenue to local, state and federal governments.

Government has done a great deal for churches; it has nourished and protected the good and the bad.

The U.S. needs financial help.  Churches should reciprocate with charity.  Business relations between church and state must change.  Churches need to be taxed.

And yes, Mr. Nielson, the U.S. is on the verge of having a theocratic democracy.  A lot of antiquated morality comes along with that.

Ray Standiford