Uncommon Sense

politics and society are, unfortunately, much the same thing

So gay marriage doesn’t affect anyone else, hmm?

For the short sighted members of society who think the Supreme Court’s creation of a new right (changing what marriage means) will have no effect on anyone else, here’s a great example of what “allowing gays to marry” really means: it means forcing everyone to accept it. I guess diversity of opinion is not included in the definition of diversity. So much or pluralism, and that old fashioned First Amendment thing.

original article: ABC/Univision Network Editor: Tax ‘Fanatical,’ ‘Bigoted’ Churches June 30, 2015 by Matthew Balan On Monday, Fusion senior editor Felix Salmon echoed New York Times writer Mark Oppenheimer’s call for the end of the tax exemption of religious institutions, but took it one step further: he called for the specific targeting of churches that “remain steadfastly bigoted on the subject” of same-sex “marriage.” Salmon contended on Fusion.net that “if your organization does not support the right of gay men and women to marry, then the government should be very clear that you’re in the wrong. And it should certainly not bend over backwards to give you the privilege of tax exemption.” The former Reuters financial blogger, who left in 2014 to work for Fusion (a joint project between ABC and Univision), began his article, “Does your church ban gay marriage? Then it should start paying taxes,” by underlining that “now that the US government formally recognizes marriage equality as a fundamental right, it really shouldn’t skew the tax code so as to give millions of dollars in tax breaks to groups which remain steadfastly bigoted on the subject. I’m talking, of course, about churches.” Salmon, a native of the United Kingdom, asserted that “for all that the US Constitution mandates the separation of church and state, the two do overlap in quite a few areas…One of those areas is taxation: the US government subsidizes churches to the tune of many billions of dollars per year by giving them tax-exempt status.” He added that “it’s important to note that the tax exemption for churches and other religious organizations is not embedded in the Constitution…Taxation is a purely secular affair, and by default it applies to everybody equally, whether they’re a religious institution or not.” The Fusion senior editor argued that “it would be unconstitutional to single out religious institutions to make them pay more tax than anybody else, but the government has every right to stop giving them special tax-free privileges.” But he soon contradicted himself, as he made it clear that he supported punishing “bigoted” churches who oppose same-sex “marriage:”

It’s abundantly clear that religious institutions have no right to tax exemption. Most famously, in 1983, Bob Jones University lost its tax-exempt status when it continued to ban interracial dating….In the Bob Jones case, the US government made a very important statement. It’s not enough, they said, to support the right of interracial couples to date and get married; it’s also important to register official disapproval of any organizations which fail to support that right. To be given exemption from paying taxes is a special privilege bestowed by the state on deserving organizations. But there’s nothing deserving about an organization which bans interracial dating. So, the state is entirely within its powers to remove that privilege. The same argument can and should be applied to gay marriage. If your organization does not support the right of gay men and women to marry, then the government should be very clear that you’re in the wrong. And it should certainly not bend over backwards to give you the privilege of tax exemption.

Salmon then brushed aside religious liberty concerns, and had the audacity to suggest to conservative that they should support his attack on dissenting religious groups:

We have religious freedom in this country, and any religious organization is entirely free to espouse whatever crazy views it likes. But when those views are fanatical and hurtful, they come into conflict with the views of any honorable legislator who believes in freedom and equality. And at that point, it makes perfect sense for our elected representatives to register their disapproval by abolishing the tax exemption for organizations who cling to narrow-minded and anachronistic views. Conservatives should not object. The libertarian position here is simple and clear: everybody has freedom of conscience, including religious organizations; the tax code should apply equally to all; and the government should not be in the business of “picking winners”, and deciding who does and who doesn’t qualify for tax exemptions. So, abolish tax exemption for all religious organizations, whether they support gay marriage or not. Religion is concerned with spiritual matters; when it comes to taxes, the general principle is “give unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s”. Which is to say, give to the country’s secular monetary authorities that which you owe in tax.

The writer concluded by claiming that “it is entirely right and proper for the state to say to a church that if you want to thumb your nose at a fundamental right which is held by all Americans, then we are not going to privilege you with tax-free status. We’ll let you practice your bigotry, at least within the confines of your own church. But we’re not about to reward you for doing so.”

Contrast Salmon’s attitude with this story:

Jorge Ramos to Ted Cruz: ‘Aren’t You Discriminating’ Against Gays by Opposing SCOTUS Ruling?
July 1, 2015 by Connor Williams

or with this one:

The Shocking Proportion of Americans Who Believe That ‘Religious Institutions or Clergy’ Should Be Forced to Perform Gay Weddings
July 1, 2015 by Billy Hallowell

or this one:

HATE WINS: OREGON STATE ISSUES GAG ORDER AGAINST OPPOSING GAY MARRIAGE
J
uly 3, 2015 by John Nolte

anti-religion, bigotry, bullies, civil rights, culture, discrimination, diversity, first amendment, freedom, hate speech, homosexuality, hypocrisy, ideology, intolerance, left wing, liberalism, news media, oppression, political correctness, progressive, public policy, reform, regulation, relativism, taxes

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Filed under: anti-religion, bigotry, bullies, civil rights, culture, discrimination, diversity, first amendment, freedom, hate speech, homosexuality, hypocrisy, ideology, intolerance, left wing, liberalism, news media, oppression, political correctness, progressive, public policy, reform, regulation, relativism, taxes

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