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IRS investigates political activity of churches, non-profits

 
 
Reply Tue 8 Nov, 2005 11:26 am
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 1,233 • Replies: 27
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NickFun
 
  1  
Reply Tue 8 Nov, 2005 06:44 pm
There seems to be very few things our government does lately that doesn't piss me off. During WWII in Japan the Buddhist religious organizations were forced to abandoned their own philosophy, accept the Shinto Talisman, and not speak out against the war. Any priest or layman who spoke out would be imprisoned and their tax-exempy status removed. It seems only natural that a religious organization would speak out against the war! It seem incridible to me that the so-called Christian Right supports war and killing. Our basic freedoms are being eroded daily and there doens't seem to be enough resistance to stop it!
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talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 01:15 am
I have no problem what the priest preachs in the church. I think the problem is preaching politics outside the church and public TV.
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NickFun
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 08:16 am
Both religion and politics affect the destiny of mankind. Though the two should always remain as separate entitities, they are forced by their very nature to deal with many of the same issues. Politicians should refrain fron endorsing or demeaning any religious philosophy.
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BlaiseDaley
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 08:23 am
Will the IRS show such concern over churches that support the president's point of view?
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 08:38 am
The Dems will get the worst of this. They play black churches like a cheap fiddle.
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Bi-Polar Bear
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 08:56 am
I do have to say that I think churches should preach about God. Isn't that sort of the point of them? I can get politics so many other places.
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NickFun
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 11:18 am
Speaking out against killing and bloodshed is one of the roles of religion. As I recall, Christians maintain "Thou Shalt Not Kill". The Christian Right has replaced this with "Thou Shalt Kill"
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parados
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 11:49 am
Lash wrote:
The Dems will get the worst of this. They play black churches like a cheap fiddle.


Lots of conservative churches pass out voter guides about abortion. Don't think this will affect Dems more.
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yitwail
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 12:40 pm
fyi, there's another thread on this story, here:

http://www.able2know.com/forums/viewtopic.php?p=1660896&highlight=irs#1660896

and here's the relevant portion of the Nov. 1, 2004 LA Times article that's the basis for the IRS probe:

Quote:
At All Saints Church in Pasadena, a liberal Episcopal congregation of 3,500 members, Rector Emeritus George Regas began by telling congregants: "I don't intend to tell you how to vote. We can just agree to disagree. You go your way and I'll go God's way," he said, provoking laughter from the crowd.

Then Regas delivered a searing indictment of the Bush administration's policies in Iraq. He criticized the drive to develop more nuclear weapons, and described tax cuts, which he said benefited the rich, as inimical to the values of Jesus.

In a sermon titled "If Jesus Debated Sen. Kerry and President Bush," Regas imagined Jesus would call war "the most extreme form of terrorism," and would equally mourn the U.S. soldiers and Iraqis who have died since the U.S. invasion.


personally, i commend conservative christians for supporting a liberal congregation in this instance. and given that disclaimer, that he didn't intend to tell anyone how to vote, i think the IRS will probably waste tax payer money pursuing this case.
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NickFun
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 04:34 pm
Jesus said, "let's kill all those who don't believe in me".

Right?
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 04:41 pm
Well. Let's see what we find:

Dems preachin in black pulpits...
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 04:43 pm
Tipper and Gore singing that old time religion....
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 04:46 pm
HOW THE DEMS WIN THE BLACK VOTE
By Michelle Malkin ยท October 24, 2005 11:02 AM
They buy it. Meant to note this late last week:

New Jersey Sen. Jon Corzine, a former Wall Street executive with a portfolio worth $261 million, has been giving some of his money to black churches, raising questions about whether it's generosity or politics.
The Democrat, who is in a tight race for governor, donated or loaned more than $2.5 million last year to black churches. He has received the endorsement of more than two dozen black ministers.

"Blatant quid pro quo-ism," said Democrat Walter Fields, Jr., former political director of New Jersey's NAACP. "We have always had wealthy candidates running for office. What we have never had is that individual wealth being used in such a direct way, and somehow we're supposed to look the other way."

...The Rev. Reginald T. Jackson, executive director of the Black Ministers Council and pastor of St. Matthew's AME Church in Orange, N.J., said black ministers have been making personal endorsements of candidates since 1981. The council does not make endorsements.

Jackson's church has received thousands of dollars from Corzine over several years, including a $50,000 loan last year.


Related: Criticized on finances, Corzine offers a shrug
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 04:50 pm
...and one more...
_______________

The Democrats Find God - Kinda

In a story titled "Kerry Speech at Church Highlights Double Standard," the Family Research Council (FRC) jumps on a Washington Post story about a black church throwing it's support behind Kerry.

It noted that a "pastor of the Miami church endorsed Kerry from the pulpit in almost messianic terms, telling his congregation, "For every Goliath, God has a David. For every Calvary's cross, God has a Christ Jesus. To bring our country out of despair, discouragement, despondency, and disgust, God has a John Kerry."

Hyperbole? Sure. But being so close to an election, one expects this sort of cheerleading on both sides. However, the FRC saw it as pure hypocrisy on behalf of the dirty liberals: "Recall the outcry from Barry Lynn and the left when Pastor Ronnie Floyd instructed his congregation to 'vote God'? Can you imagine the outcry that would arise from the Democrats and the liberal media if President Bush made an appearance like Senator Kerry's, and similar things were said about him? They would be pressing to have the church's tax exemption lifted the next day."

In reality, however, this is only hypocrisy if Kerry was among those who joined in the fight against Pastor Ronnie Floyd. As far as I know, he wasn't. It's a group called "Americans United for Separation of Church and State" that's causing the double standard. What was done with Floyd was just more dirty politics executed by organizations with (supposedly) no direct connection to the candidates -- something we've been seeing more and more of lately.

What the Bush guys did to McCain in the 2000 primaries (the confirmed spreading of rumors involving his wife's unconfirmed drug problems, the use of "push polling" to coerce votes, third-party groups distributing slanderous flyers) was just as bad as the Pastor Ronnie Floyd IRS switcheroo some left-wingers tried to pull off on Bush. The same could be said for this "Swift Boat Veterans for Truth" debacle that Bush supporters have pulled on Kerry. Bush keeps his hands (mostly) clean of all this stuff, just as Kerry kept his hands (mostly) clean of Pastor Ronnie Floyd. But it happens nonetheless.

It's an endemic of the current system, and the system needs to be cleaned up. But these little games cannot be pinned on Kerry or the liberals in general as a double standard any more so than they can be pinned on Bush or the right-wingers. It's a larger problem -- it's a problem about political parties trying to win by any means necessary, instead of truly playing by moral standards or in defense of principals.

John F. Kerry is supported by some church groups and Bush is supported by others. However, it's interesting that the African-American churches are rallying behind JFK II while the hard-line Catholics have tagged GB II as their man. There was a time when both these groups would have been sure-thing Democrats, and logically they still should be....

Other than the abortion issue (which Kerry dances around like a prickly pear), boring old JFK II is probably the safer bet for Catholics, in my paranoid mind, because the Evangelicals (the most fervent George Bush supporters) historically have had a seething hatred of Catholics.

Oh, the Evangelicals and Catholics are cozy enough at the moment, but Protestant vs. Catholic animosity has merely sunk beneath the surface, I suspect. I've met quite a few people who only rank Catholics a few circles up in Dante's inferno -- just above the Jews and Muslims. Spend a couple of years in the Deep South, Florida included, and once people get to feel comfortable around you they might tell you about how the Catholics are all idol worshippers that are surely burn -- I was told this many a time, first hand, in a kindly and genteel manner, of course.

When it comes down to it, the extreme-right wings of the Catholic and Protestant churches make for good political bedfellows -- they both certainly have little use for these crazy agnostics and atheists. And Buddhists and Hindus aren't even worth mentioning. And due to Middle East policies, the Jews are even finding support in the Christian community.
_____________________

The Dems camp out in black churches for a few months every four years.
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revel
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 04:54 pm
You still hung up on the "dems" and blacks?

Anyway, I think it is a shame when churches bring politics into the church but from my own experience it has been happening for years. Funny how it is when a liberal point of view is expressed is when uncle sam gets involved.
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Lash
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 05:01 pm
You still hung up on GWB?
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Nov, 2005 05:30 pm
revel wrote:
Funny how it is when a liberal point of view is expressed is when uncle sam gets involved.


The IRS has recently been cracking down on ALL tax exempt organizations that have been breaking the rules in regards to campaigns and elections (as they should!).

Under the IRS rules if you wish your organization to remain tax exempt then your org can't endorse or condem any specific candidate running for any office. They are limited to stating their position on issues only. In the last month we've had at least 5 non-profit orgs in trouble with the IRS for their activities in the greater Boston area. The people they were for/against were on both sides of the political game.
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revel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Nov, 2005 07:21 am
Quote:
They are limited to stating their position on issues only.


If the rules are limited to stating their position on issues only, why would stating you are against the war get a church in trouble?

Personally I think it is going too far if casual statements made in church can get you are trouble even if the statement is saying that you are going to vote for so and so.
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revel
 
  1  
Reply Thu 10 Nov, 2005 07:24 am
Lash wrote:
You still hung up on GWB?


yes
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