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Religious Discrimination in Stimulus Bill

I have a challenge for all of you folks who are so enamored with this spendulus monstrosity. Explain to me how making it illegal for religious organizations or individuals to hold services or meetings on college campuses or any facilities that are improved or renovated with funds from this bill is stimulative. There, tucked cleanly inside, deep beneath the fat of all the social spending are two sentences that make it legal to discriminate against religion. So, if this passes groups such as Campus Crusade for Christ, Athletes in Action and other Christian - and let's not forget Jewish, Muslim, and Hindu - groups would no longer be able to hold any religious activities inside any building that used funds from this bill for any renovations or improvements. Senator DeMint brought this to the senate's attention and asked that they vote for his amendment that would strike this provision from the bill. Watch:

In case you're wondering, his amendment failed 43-54. Suddenly discrimination is stimulative.

Hat tip: WND


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Comments (13)

Man I'm glad this provision... (Below threshold)
ODA315:

Man I'm glad this provision is in the bill. If not, we might never have recovered from this financial catastrophe.

And discovered on the heels of the President's prayer breakfast, lolol. Gosh don't ya just love this Hope N Change.....

Ironic that our lefty frien... (Below threshold)
P. Bunyan:

Ironic that our lefty friends for years have been screaming that the Republicans trash the constitution yet in the first weeks of the Obamanation the Dems have already voilated the first two clauses of the First Ammendment.

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion", but they can make a "Climate Czar" based soley on their beliefs (i.e. their religion).

And now this alleged "stimulous" bill that clearly violates "or prohibiting the free exercise thereof".

But its o.k. to them I guess-- after all, you gotta break a few eggs to make an Obamatopia.

Kim,Don't worry. Th... (Below threshold)
Codekeyguy Author Profile Page:

Kim,
Don't worry. This will NOT affect muslim religious practices. They get a pass here.

Good grief. Ted, you reall... (Below threshold)

Good grief. Ted, you really should use the username "Pete Repeat" instead.

How many times are you going to clutter up comment sections on numerous blogs with the same, identical message before you realize your spam won't make any difference? Are you really going to keep it up for the next 4 years?

And #3, what point were you actually trying to make against the point of the post? There's absolutely no good reason for using the Porkulus bill to ban freedom of religion and freedom of assembly on a college campus. Just because these funds would renovate a building doesn't mean there's a suddenly a separation of church and state problem if a religious organization holds a meeting in one of said renovated buildings.

If your point was that there's no defending this action, you made it very well.

Is it just me or does this ... (Below threshold)
STaylor:

Is it just me or does this stimulus bill get creepier by the day?
How many other little provisions and quibbles are inserted into those several hundred pages without us knowing?
Mr. transparent is not even allowing us, the American people, even enough time to actually read this damn thing. At this rate I almost half expect some one to find "oh and by the Obama is now president for life" line inserted in there.
Note to lefties and trolls I am not saying there is, but if there was how would we know could we find a disasterouse little rider like that if we actually had a chance to read the thing?

As banks have found out, th... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:

As banks have found out, the TARP money came with strings that keep growing. The Bush administration specifically bought non-voting stock so that the government wasn't telling the banks how to run their business.. The Democrats don't care that the holder of non-voting stock doesn't get to tell the company anything let alone that they can't use private jets or that there's a salary cap. The Democrates don't care about such laws or principles, they just use the power of the government to gets rights beyond that of any other party, rights they get to make up on the fly and after the fact.

I remember playing made-up games as a kid and some other kids would keep coming up with new rules after the fact and always in their favor. Well that's a lot like what the democrats are doing now.

Placing restrictions on the use of a public building because money from the stimulus bill was used to weather-strip it is just another string. State and local governments need to consider the stings knowing that the democrats can add more strings even after the money is spent.

I went to college at a priv... (Below threshold)

I went to college at a private Christian university that received Federal grant money to assist in building natural science facilities during the 1960's. I clearly remember professors telling us that in order to receive those Federal grants, the school had to agree that no religious instruction would take place in those classrooms. So it seems like this is not something wholly newfangled.

It simply illustrates the danger associated with dipping into Uncle Sam's coin purse -- the Federal "golden rule" -- he who has the gold makes the rules.

"I have a challenge for all... (Below threshold)
Herman:

"I have a challenge for all of you folks who are so enamored with this spendulus monstrosity. Explain to me how making it illegal for religious organizations or individuals to hold services or meetings on college campuses or any facilities that are improved or renovated with funds from this bill is stimulative." -- Kim

Okay, no problem, I accept the challenge. When people are engaged in religious activity, then they're not stimulating the economy. If you make it harder for people to waste their time beseeching their imaginary buddy, Sky Chief, then you also make it more likely that they'll be spending their time doing something constructive.

That was easy enough.

That was easy enou... (Below threshold)
Mac Lorry:
That was easy enough.

Easy enough to prove your ignorance once again.

Given the snippets from the... (Below threshold)

Given the snippets from the linked Fox News article, I believe that the exact text that DeMint is objecting to is prohibiting uses of funds for buing used for:

"C) modernization, renovation, or repair of facilities--(i) used for sectarian instruction, religious worship, or a school or department of divinity; or (ii) in which a substantial portion of the functions of the facilities are subsumed in a religious mission."

Suggesting that provision C says that "groups would no longer be able to hold any religious activities inside any building that used funds from this bill for any renovations or improvements" is simply wrong. Even if you think that "C" is vague, it helps to know that the majority of this language was already used in the Higher Education Facilities Act of 1963 and its Consitutionality and meaning was decided in TILTON v. RICHARDSON, heard before the Supreme Court in 1971.

So, the short answer to Kim's challenge is that there is nothing new about this language and it already a matter of settled law that it doesn't do what she says it does. If it did, then I suppose that no religious group has met in government funded buildings that were built/repaired with grants under similar provisions since 1971.

Relax people, we are still ... (Below threshold)
LiberalNitemare:

Relax people, we are still free to worship the Obama any where we want!

Joe Yangtree #10 -- When re... (Below threshold)
Alan:

Joe Yangtree #10 -- When reading proposed language for a law, assume it will be interpreted in the least favorable light possible. Innocuous sounding wording in bills has often resulted in precisely what the crafter intended, and not what the initial reading implied.

Alan #12 -- You did actuall... (Below threshold)

Alan #12 -- You did actually read the part of my post where I stated that this exact wording had been used in Congressional bills since 1963, right? And you did also read the part where I stated that the legal interpretation and Constitutionality of this exact wording had already been determined by the Supreme Court, right? So there's no need to make assumptions as to how it will be interpreted. It will be interpreted the same way it has been since the 1971 decision. If you want to talk about "what initial reading implied" and "what the crafter intended" you're over 40 years too late.




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