Taxing Religious Institutions

Mark Oppenheimer writes in Time that Now’s the Time to End Tax Exemptions for Religious Institutions:

The Supreme Court’s ruling on gay marriage makes it clearer than ever that the government shouldn’t be subsidizing religion and non-profits

At the Acton Institute blog, Joe Carter disagrees:

I am not using the term “un-American” as an invective against a despised political opponent. In fact, I don’t use that term as an insult at all, but merely as an accurate description of an idea that is fundamentally at odds with American principles. Taxing churches and other charitable non-profits implies that the people exist to serve the government, rather than the government for the people. That is about as un-American as it gets.

Here’s a roundup from the Pew Center about how religious institutions might be affected by the ruling.

I’ve written about this previously. While I agree with Carter as a matter of political philosophy, we need to remember the Golden Rule: whoever has the gold makes the rules. If a church gets used to a benefit that the government can withhold, then you can certainly expect that benefit to be used as a carrot in the hope that the church will do what the government wants it to do.


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