The idea of offering respect to the religious institutions has never been a terrible thought. It is a respect originally generated from the purpose of wisdom that can be provided by these entities. They hold the status of non-profit organizations in the same fashion as charities, due to the services provided to the community. This very idea at its core holds steady with beliefs set down by some of the great fathers and mothers of the country. In fact, it is crucial to the ideal that no religion is established by the government or prohibited in its practice. It is a principle that would be difficult for any citizen to avoid supporting.
However, it has begun to feel that such a simple principle has been corrupted and ruined by the activities of these organizations. That is not to say that all are, but when an organization grows large enough to create its own form of lobbying, it may be time to re-examine this situation. As many have concluded in the past, there is an understood and well-supported case that the US Constitution speaks of a separation of church and state. This separation works to help offer the religious organizations the special tax exempt status, yet some of these organizations have become a political tool to influence the congregations. This is the line. Once a tax exempt entity enters the arena of the state, the separation is gone and the exemption is void.
Now some might consider it to be difficult to make a judgment of how far is too far or that freedom of religion is guaranteed by the Bill of Rights. Consider that statement and remember that it is a barrier to help protect the state from the establishment of a single religion while protecting the various religions from being persecuted as being the wrong religion for the whole country. It is not a matter of negotiation for how far, but a simple concept of keeping the structure protected. If a tax exempt organization steps into a position that will influence the state, it loses its status.
On the same principle, the state does not cross the line either to establish a single tax exempt organization above others. Now, it is understandable that one religion or charitable group might have a majority, but it needs to remain separate. Imagine what would happen if the Red Cross become so imbedded in the state that other charities could not raise donations to support their cause. Yes, we know that the Red Cross serves in emergencies and disasters, but we still need those charities that support research into cancer and various social causes. We need to have a level playing field and not some lopsided debate.
In the end, the point remains that tax exempt status for non-profit organizations should be honored to those that remain inside the guidelines. The boundaries occur for a reason and once they are broken, all the guarantees of a stable society are in jeopardy. What is the point of a democracy if the voices of the many are drowned out by the voices of the few? There is no doubt in my mind that if we can find our balance again, we will never stop our progress as a country and a world of human kind.
Well, back at the keyboard to catch up on some writing and hoping to put up some solid material. The good news is that I will be back in the workforce at the first of the month. This will place a change in life after ten months of unemployment. I am pleased with the change and look forward to the next phase of life. Now, I am on to some conversation about the world.
Every four years, the citizens of this country file into the polls to cast their votes for the nation’s President. It is a civic duty to step into the booth and voice a choice. It is in this moment that the system brings together the majority voice. This choice is passed onto the Electoral College, which posts their choice along with the state, mostly. This system does have a built-in feature that allows the popular vote’s majority to not be the determining factor for declaring the winner. It is something that has been revealed a few times in U.S. history. Most recently it was seen in the 2000 election. It was left to the Supreme Court to step in to make a decision regarding a recount in Florida.
This is a simplified explanation of how the country elects a President, yet it does demonstrate that participation in the system is still necessary. It is worth the time that it takes to find the polls’ location and go there. It is a right that cannot be taken away from any law-abiding citizen. With that vote, a citizen continues the traditions that were purchased with blood so many years ago and is defended to this very day. If one wants to honor all those that sacrifice themselves, voting is the best way to continue the dream of holding the foundations of the nation together. That is essential to the future where a better world can be made.
With that said, it is disappointing to see a couple of terrible matters coming to light. The first is dealing with the possible regulations, policies, and laws that have been used in various states to require U.S. citizens to acquire a new form of identification as proof of voting rights or the limiting of poll access to voters by eliminating early voting times that have accommodated large participation in the past. These forms of reduction hold a hinted partisan politics in some cases, but mostly, it is evident that particular groups have been targeted by these changes. When the explanation is given, the legislatures and governors gesture to the idea of voter fraud. Of course, as insignificant as the number of cases of voter fraud presented nationwide, these kinds of changes are similar to bandaging a pin prick with a full body cast. Has the country come to the point where it must claw back all the rights from the state governments?
Now, as stated, the right to vote has been paid in sacrifice by the honored veterans of the country. An armed force of volunteers is used to protect our country and our interest abroad. They step into the danger of combat to give all of us the rights that we squabble about on a daily basis including the simple right to free speech. It is on this point that it must be mentioned that the Senate decided, this past week, to vote 58-40 on a bill to help support these very veterans. It was filibustered and failed to pass. This was not one of those entitlement programs that are slammed by voices claiming that people are dependent on the government. Have these veterans not also earned the right to be supported by the country that they defend with their lives? Yes they have and they are entitled to a repayment for their services.
Finally, a note to my audience: I am an U.S. citizen and I am born with inalienable human rights which are protected in the Constitution and its Bill of Rights. I will vote in the election to exercise these rights. I educate myself on the facts of the political arena and weigh my decisions on those facts. I do not believe that I am a victim and seek to depend on the government anymore than my fellow citizens. I depend on them to protect me for enemies. I depend on them to provide the proper infrastructure to keep the roads and bridges built. I depend on them to regulate businesses so that none can damage the environment and the economy because these entities are logically basing decision on the bottom line. That kind of thinking will never serve a community solely.
We are a country of communities and individuals finding a method to work to the benefit of the country as a whole and to the benefit of the individual dreams. I depend on us to move into a better understanding of what that means as a country. I leave it to hope that we learn it soon.