It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
The Free Exercise Clause
The Free Exercise Clause is the accompanying clause with the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution. The Establishment Clause and the Free Exercise Clause together read:" Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof..." Thus, the Establishment Clause prevents the US from establishing or advocating for a specific religion, while the Free Exercise clause is intended to ensure the rights of Americans to practice their religions without state intervention . The Supreme Court has consistently held, however, that the right to free exercise of religion is not absolute, and that it is acceptable for the government to limit free exercise in some cases.
originally posted by: Gryphon66
Glad to see you now understand the requirements of tax exempt status.
Perhaps you're not a wingnut. I can only go on what I read.
Setting your irrelevant semantic nit-picking on my use of a common figure-of-speech to the side ... do you agree that my statement is accurate about what the First Amendment actually says vis-a-vis religion?
... however, the First Amendment does not grant tax-free status to churches.
In 1954, the U.S. Congress amended (without debate or analysis) Internal Revenue Code §501(c )( 3) to restrict the speech of non - profit tax exempt entities, including churches. Before th e amendment was passed, there were no restrictions on what churches could or couldn’t do with regard to speech about government and voting , excepting only a 1934 law preventing non - profits from using a substantial part of their resources to lobby for legi s lation .
The Court now announced: "The First Amendment has erected ‘a wall of separation between church and state.’ That wall must be kept high and impregnable." This was a new philosophy for the Court. Why would the Court take Jefferson’s letter completely out of context and cite only eight of its words? Dr. William James, the Father of modern Psychology—and a strong opponent of religious principles in government and education—perhaps explained the Court’s new strategy when he stated: "There is nothing so absurd but if you repeat it often enough people will believe it." This statement precisely describes the tact utilized by the Court in the years following its 1947 announcement.
The Court began regularly to speak of a "separation of church and state," broadly explaining that, "This is what the Founders wanted—separation of church and state. This is their great intent." The Court failed to quote the Founders; it just generically asserted that this is what the Founders wanted.
The courts continued on this track so steadily that, in 1958, in a case called Baer v. Kolmorgen, one of the judges was tired of hearing the phrase and wrote a dissent warning that if the court did not stop talking about the "separation of church and state," people were going to start thinking it was part of the Constitution. That warning was in 1958! Nevertheless, the Court continued to talk about separation until June 25th, 1962, when, in the case Engle v. Vitale, the Court delivered the first ever ruling which completely separated Christian principles from education.
Those discussions—recorded in the Congressional Records from June 7 through September 25 of 1789—make clear their intent for the First Amendment. By it, the Founders were saying: "We do not want in America what we had in Great Britain: we don’t want one denomination running the nation. We will not all be Catholics, or Anglicans, or any other single denomination.
We do want God’s principles, but we don’t want one denomination running the nation." This intent was well understood, as evidenced by court rulings after the First Amendment. For example, a 1799 court declared: "By our form of government, the Christian religion is the established religion; and all sects and denominations of Christians are placed on the same equal footing." Again, note the emphasis:
"We do want Christian principles—we do want God’s principles—but we don’t want one denomination to run the nation."
originally posted by: ownbestenemy
a reply to: Onslaught2996
And as stated, all Churches, for your very stance is threatening to their natural and political right, should withdrawal their exempt status and preach all day about politics.
I would be interested to see how many would respond to such but we know how that will go...as it seems the following should not be able to exhibit nor engage in speech: Corporations, religious institutions, and private organizations. Unless of course, they pay their taxes then heck, go right ahead, you paid your toll. Speak freely...or as freely as you can after you give us money.
originally posted by: OccamsRazor04
originally posted by: Onslaught2996
Do we want the Salem witch trials all over again...that type of BS would starting all over if the church was given more power.
Hilarious, fear mongering at it's best.
originally posted by: Logarock
a reply to: SomePeople
Looks like the witches are in charge these days and they love their fires.
originally posted by: Logarock
a reply to: SomePeople
No I mean that the witches have been very busy burning the opposition at the state. Granted its a new type of fire but not even the witches can get away with actually burning folks at the stake any more. Its the dream of the Baal worshipers to be able to publically sacrifice humans like they did for years in the good old days.
originally posted by: SomePeople
a reply to: Gryphon66
Oh what a load of rubbish. The only reason any cults perform charitable activities is because they are scared of the deity they believe in and want to please it so they don't burn and also so they can push their cult on more people.
Religions are businesses.