Obama still funding failed ‘faith-based’ programmes

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It is time to put an end to the grants for faith-based organisations in the name of preventing HIV/AIDS, writes author.


During a trip to Uganda last fall, I travelled through small villages near Jinja, a city about 71km from Kampala and home to the source of the Nile. Young Mormons, wearing the uniform of crisp white shirt, black tie, nametag and backpack, walked from hut to hut. 

They travelled in pairs: one white Mormon and one black Mormon. My driver and guide told me that having a black missionary made the approach easier. Presumably, the young black missionary would speak at least Swahili. 

However, those rite-of-passage mission trips are funded by the church, enabled through strict adherence by congregants to its aggressive tithing requirements.  

But it is when mission trips – by any other name – are funded by US taxpayer money that we must put a stop to it.  

George W Bush ushered in an era of unprecedented funding to faith-based (read: Christian) organisations. 

The US has always funded religion in one way or another – think of tax-exempt status for churches and all houses of worship no matter the religion and multi-million dollar support of Catholic hospitals.     

But Bush's vision was special. Billions in US taxpayer money was doled out to the Evangelicals who got him elected, a de facto payoff. The funds came through virtually every department under executive branch oversight, including the Department of Defense, Justice and the Department of Health and Human Services

Written By: Andy Kopsa
continue to source article at aljazeera.com

5 COMMENTS

  1. So what’s new? The most powerful government in the world is actively funding superstition and ignorance ! No wonder Marx described religion as the opium of the masses, the cry of the oppressed. He got it dead right there ! Keep those bloody workers in their place ! Keep their minds on heaven, whilst they have to toil through this “vale of tears”.

  2. He’s wrong about Mormon missionaries. Tithing dollars don’t pay for their missions, they pay their own way. When I served a Mormon mission 20 years ago, my family footed the bill.

    There IS a system where each missionary pays the average cost of a mission onto a central fund. From that, the church pays rent and travel costs and gives each missionary a monthly allowance. This is supposed to equalize the costs between very expensive and cheaper places to travel and live. It is also intended to help families get a better idea how much they will need to save to pay for a mission.

    Mormon children at encouraged to start saving at an early age to pay for their own missions. I still remember the children’s songs they taught us in primary about planning and saving and preparing to “serve”.

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