Friday, February 8, 2013

Petition: Episcopalians should not have religious freedom

Apparently Ralph Reed, Christianist right-wing activist and opponent of equality, thinks Episcopalians should not have religious freedom. He has put up a petition saying that the National Cathedral should not be eligible for federal grants if they marry same sex couples. Let us note that same sex marriage is legal in Washington DC.
In recent years, the National Cathedral has received hundreds of thousands of dollars in federal grants. The Episcopal Church is one of the richest denominations in the United States and the oldest. According to Richard Ostling of the Associated Press, “the 7,364 congregations of the Episcopal Church receive $2.14 billion in offerings a year: Their buildings and liquid assets are worth untold billions." Why is a church with untold billions in assets and asking American taxpayers to fund their church? With this policy change, taxpayers are being asked to subsidize gay marriage ceremonies for a church that can readily access millions of their own funds. Pro-family and Pro-freedom Americans cannot sit idly by. We believe the definition of “marriage” to be the union of one man to one woman. If the National Cathedral wants to continue to receive taxpayer funding from Congress, they should respect Congressional action like the Defense of Marriage Act.
This exposes the hypocrisy of the "religious freedom" meme used by conservatives. It's not religious freedom, unless it applies to everyone, and that they will not agree with. No, this is religious imposition.

And, moreover, it's a lie. The National Cathedral does not receive regular federal funds, as implied by this petition. It does not receive support from the National Church, either. It once received a grant for the building, but Reed's implications that it receives ongoing funds that "underwrite" marriages, and his demands this stops, are, simply, nonsense.


Anonymous said...

I think he actually may be onto something. How about we halt all government money going to religious orgs? No "Faith Based Initiatives", no money for Catholic hospitals. Period. Seperation of church and state - except what he really wants is government money spent lavishly for HIS church. Hypocrite.


Brother David said...

This is an example of shooting your mouth off and making a fool of oneself with very little and faulty information. He needs to slink back to his corner and keep his mouth shut.

dr.primrose said...

I have to admit that I would be happier if the cathedral had not accepted that $700,000 grant.

The separation of church and state benefits, in my opinion, more the church than the state.

Perhaps I'm too cynical, but there's really no free lunch. If the church accepts government money, there's too often an expection of a quid pro quo that's detrimental to the church.