Sunday, February 25, 2007

Case to Watch: Hein v. Freedom From Religion Foundation

This Wednesday, the Supreme Court will hear the oral arguments for Hein v. Freedom From Religion Foundation. The purpose of this case is to challenge the Bush administration's appropriation of funds raised from taxpayers to religious groups in such projects as the "Faith-Based Initiatives". The Bush adminisration's side will argue that they used general operating funds for these initiatives and that taxpayers cannot challenge such action.

I have one word for the administration's stand on this: bullshit. The day US citizens can't challenge the government's use of their taxes is the day the government no longer belongs to the people. Basically, the administration is saying the the law does not apply to its actions since only it knows the people's best interests. It's downright scary.

Of course, this has been happening for some time, but the Faith-Based Initiatives are one of the most flagrant manifestations of this lawlessness. Even though the money given to religious groups is said to be for charitable purposes, there's no oversight whatsoever. Religious groups can do whatever they want with the money. It is in direct violation of the establishment clause of the Constiution, and should not be allowed to stand.

Unfortunately, Hein v. Freedom From Religion Foundation will not challenge the Faith-Based Initiatives directly. Instead, it will determine whether or not taxpayers can challenge such governmental action. The fact that this is in question should be enough to concern people by itself. At any rate, if the Supreme Court agrees with the Constitution, then we should finally see some direct challenges to the administration's poorly veiled attempt to bring us closer to a theocracy.

Read more at Americans United

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