Wants religion taxed as a businesss

COURTESY TO THE BELLINGHAM HERALDJune 18, 2014 

The central issue in the debate over taxing PeaceHealth is this: Does it charge for the services it provides? If yes, then I believe it meets the definition of a business and should be taxed accordingly.

That aside, the underlying principle here concerns the overall validity of tax exemptions for religious organizations - a practice 'd like to see discontinued.

Despite the myriad of religions, billions of followers, and thousands of years of history, I believe there is no solid evidence whatsoever to support the central tenet upon which religions are based; specifically that there exists some sort of divine entity/creator.

There is, however, quite a blurry line between religion and entertainment - which is taxed appropriately. For instance, astrologers and fortune tellers are taxed, but not those who peddle predictions from the Book of Revelations.

But Christianity is not unique; every religion adheres to beliefs that are, to me, unverifiable. Despite these shaky foundations and lack of accountability, religions are profitable and propagating, especially in areas without an educated populace.

In the U.S., religions rely not just on their followers, but also upon the subsidies of taxpayers, all while being exempted from paying back their fair share.

If religion really is the opiate of the masses, perhaps it is time that we sobered up and faced reality as to the true costs of what I believe to be a destructive addition.

Carlos Montage

Bellingham

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