Backs taxing churches as businesses

COURTESY TO THE BELLINGHAM HERALDJuly 2, 2014 

In "Misquoting Jesus," theologian Bart Ehrman showed that the basis for belief in God is just that; a belief, that has morphed over time and that the existence of any deity is non-verifiable. It amazes me that people will steadfastly hold to such a belief but reject information derived from repeatable scientific experimentation such as on climate change. They do often accept science based medicine that can cure their illness.. I don't dispute anyone's right to hold unfounded beliefs but I do object, as another reader did recently, to paying more in taxes so that the institutions selling/fostering those beliefs can pay reduced or no taxes for government-provided services that they rely on to function. We are a nation of many Christians but we are not a Christian nation (see 1st Amendment to the constitution). If the Supreme Court can decide that denying marriage to gay and lesbian couples is unequal treatment for taxation, then so must tax breaks for religious institutions be unequal treatment. Churches are more than anything in the business of selling their beliefs so treat them like the businesses that they are and tax them the same as other citizens are taxed.

Michael Tomlinson

Bellingham

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