Many churches and organizations under the guise of the Lord, are playing dirty, dirty politics, and much of the public knows it and is fed up. It’s not hard to imagine these same churches are beng ‘bought.’ That is their business. The taxes they should be paying to play politics, is America’s business.
For much too long churches have engaged in corrupt manipulation, as they promote political propaganda to their congregation, in the name of God. Come election time, the agenda is downright blatant as videos are distributed to church members to remind them of the evil-doing Democrats and Liberals, and the saintly pseudo ‘Christian’ Conservatives. I aspire to Christian liberal beliefs with a dash of Buddhism – meaning I strive to live Christ-like (and I often fail miserably). It disgusts me to see the blasphemous political shenanigans that take place in the churches around this country. These activities have driven me, and many others, from the church. I claim my faith, because I’d like more people to know there are Christian liberals and progressives out there. We’re not all what you see in mainstream/social media – and we are as stunned as anyone by the religious extremists who call themselves Christians and try to force feed their hateful BS to churches or anyone buying (or receiving).
Some churches are tax-havens for rampant government speech. Why not just turn on a recording of Rush Limbaugh during the service. At least he proudly spews his sermon of lies, misogyny, racism, and lgbt-hating bigotry, for all to hear. He doesn’t hide behind the word of GOD. Rather, he hides behind the word of GOP.
The bottom line – If churches want to jump into the arena and play politics, they should pay taxes like the rest of us.
If you don’t feel churches should receive tax-exemptions at all, political or non-political, you can visit the The Freedom of Religion Foundation (FFRF) site. They are working towards exposing and remedying the injustice of church tax-exemption.
If you believe just the political churches should pay taxes, you can make note of the churches in your area that are clearly practicing party agenda. It will become more blatant as midterm election campaigns get underway. Visit those churches and perhaps tape some of their sermons. You may find out they are not as political as you thought. But if they are dealing dirty, you can submit those tapes to social/mainstream media, congress, or the IRS. But do it kindly, truthfully and to create positive change. Remembers the Golden Rule. This is not to squelch a church’s freedom of speech. This is to promote fairness. If Linda Lu working at McDonald’s has to pay taxes on minimum wages, so should the churches playing politics. And the taxes rightfully paid could help millions of people in need.
If you are part of a church congregation where they preach politics from the pulpit, consider talking with your pastor/priest and expressing your concerns to him or her. Talk with other church members. Or consider finding a new place to worship.
There is always something we can do. Every time we respectfully take a stand against wrong, whether we do it in a big or small way, we are making a difference. We create the laws. We vote in the lawmakers. We become the change we wish to see.
Author’s Note: Some of the original title and text has been removed from this story, as I mistakenly confused tax exemptions 501-c(4) entities with 501-c(3) entities. The subject of Congressman Van Hollen’s lawsuit does not apply to churches. I apologize for the error and am grateful to those who brought it to my attention.
Photo Credit: Village of Joy/20 Most Unusual Churces/Stuck In Customs
|Leslie Salzillo is an activist, political commentator and visual artist. She began contributing to Liberals Unite in June of 2013.|