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Concern over Prop 8

I was watching the news tonight and heard the tailend of a story so I can't be sure that I heard everything correctly, but, I heard reference to the anti-prop 8 movement bringing a lawsuit to the Mormon church because they supposedly violated rules by donating money to the Yes campaign (which they dispute and say was donated by individuals, not the church as a whole). However, what concerned me was that they mentioned attempting to revoke the Mormon church's tax exempt status. My huge concern over this is not that I think the Mormon church was correct (on the contrary)---but my concern is that this seemed to be one of the biggest fears and reasons that people felt like they needed to vote Yes. And my understanding was that this (along with education in schools) was never an issue with Prop 8. And the No campaign was constantly in a battle trying to reassure that church's tax exempt status would never be in jeopardy and marriage in schools was not an issue in this prop.

It seems to me like a lawsuit against a particular church would actually be a huge step in the WRONG direction for No on Prop 8---because now I believe a big portion of that 52% of California voters will feel like they were correct in thinking that their church's tax status might be in jeopardy if Prop 8 is defeated---and furthermore, this may put doubt in people's minds about the education issue as well. Do you see what I mean?

Does anyone else have any more information on this? I hope what I am saying makes sense--it's late. But I wanted to put this out there before I forget!

image Emily 7-10-04
My Food Blog Visit The Nest!

Re: Concern over Prop 8

  • Hmm.  Interesting points.  I understand what you mean.  I don't know the details of the suit, I will need to look it up.
  • this is one of the reasons I admit I voted "yes".

    If it were all about discriminating against gays for the sake of "ew, gays are yucky and they shouldn't get married" I'd have voted no --I couldn't care less if they got married and are happy like any other couple. It SHOULD be as straightforward as all that.

    my trouble is I'm very uncomfortable with it is: a) that judges were willing to overturn a previous vote of the people against gay marriage -that they would patently ignore (like it or not) the will of the majority of citizens is disturbing. b) that churches -who regardless of wishiwereahousewife's friend's analysis otherwise- have a deeply held conviction against gay marriage would be forced, in essense, to perform and recognize gay weddings or face lawsuits and losing tax exempt status; and c) not that I thought gay marriage would be put on classroom curriculum, but I do think alternative lifestyles based on a sexual nature shouldn't be a topic addressed with children too early. Kids' textbooks now have to be all-inclusive to be approved for use: if there is a white kid, there must be a black kid, if there is a kid on a bike, there is a kid in wheelchair, etc. If Tiffany has a mom and dad, Jimmy must be shown with his two dads Bruce and Tony. Following that formula, if marriage was defined on the books to include same-sex couples, it will end up IN the books, so to speak, hence gay marraige in schools. It's too complicated a topic to explain to kids --99% of whom don't have any concept of a gay relationship and only understand a traditional marriage.

    This is my two cents on that.

  • Makes me NOT want to vote ever again....it is kind of like you try to do what you believe and you just get burnt.

  • Just some more food for thought.. not about the churches, but the CTA's campaign contributions.

    http://www.ocregister.com/articles/cta-school-teachers-2202084-union-prop

     

  • image julnmatt:

    Makes me NOT want to vote ever again....it is kind of like you try to do what you believe and you just get burnt.

    I couldn't agree more!?

  • Churches and nonprofit organizations that have tax deductible status are 501(c)3 organizations under the IRS tax laws. ?This tax status allows contributors to these organizations to get a tax deduction - making it much easier for them to raise money.

    As part of this IRS code, these organizations are restricted in the activities that they are allowed to do. ?They are not allowed to endorse candidates, endorse positions on any ballot measures, lobby legislators on any bills that are being voted on. ?If they step over the line, they put their tax-deductible status on the line. ?The churches, the pastors, the staff know these restrictions.

    Until now, there has been few repercussions for violating their tax status. ?Many religious leaders have preached how their churches should vote on initiatives and candidates. ?For that, they risk losing their tax status.

    All Saints Church in Pasadena was threatened by the IRS for preaching against the Iraq war. ?They did not lose their status because they were not lobbying or endorsing candidates or initiatives. ?

    However, if the Mormon church has violated their tax status, they should absolutely lose their 501(c)3 status. ?It seems that some of their involvement comes very close to violating the tax law, and if they have the IRS should revoke their status. ?

    The church should be protected from violating the law for any reason. ?Laws are in place for everyone to follow - you don't get a pass because you're a church.

    IVF w/ ICSI #2 - fraternal twins born December 2010 at 36 weeks.
  • You are mixing two different issues:

    Issue #1: The loss of tax expemption mentioned in the Yes campaign's propaganda referred to what they wanted people to think would happen: That churches would be forced to perform gay marriages and if they didn't do so, then the church would lose its tax-exempt status on discrimination grounds. This was patently false however, as no churches would have been forced to perform gay marriages. For example, most churches have limits on who can be married within the church (i.e. a member of the faith, parish members, confirmed members, no divorcees, etc.) and it's perfectly fine.

    Issue #2: The current attack against the tax exempt status of some churches relates directly to the extent of campaign activities of those churches. The IRS has rules regarding lobbying from the pulpit; whether those rules were followed is what is being questioned.

    It's a bit confusing and some of the distinctions may be narrow, but I hope that anyone concerned about the issue would take the time the learn about it.

    [IMG]http://i41.tinypic.com/20uzlzc.jpg[/IMG]
    The Blog
  • image 2bBush:

    my trouble is I'm very uncomfortable with it is: a) that judges were willing to overturn a previous vote of the people against gay marriage -that they would patently ignore (like it or not) the will of the majority of citizens is disturbing.

    Judges have a duty to uphold the constitution. Hence why our government has a built in system of checks and balances. The previous vote was overturned because it was found to violate the state's constitution. Keep in mind that without judges taking a stand against discriminatory laws passed by citizens we would still have things like segregation and the inability for two different races to marry. Without judges looking at the constitution as a living document, we wouldn't have things like Miranda rights.

    b) that churches -who regardless of wishiwereahousewife's friend's analysis otherwise- have a deeply held conviction against gay marriage would be forced, in essense, to perform and recognize gay weddings or face lawsuits and losing tax exempt status

    Has anyone ever sued the Catholic church for refusing to marry divorced individuals? Or sued a Jewish synagogue for refusing to marry someone who is not Jewish? Or sued a Lutheran church for refusing to marry a polygamous group? The passage of Prop 8 would not have forced churches in any way to change the church's beliefs or practices.

    and c) not that I thought gay marriage would be put on classroom curriculum, but I do think alternative lifestyles based on a sexual nature shouldn't be a topic addressed with children too early.

    I grew up in San Francisco during the height of the AIDS crisis. My mom worked at a hospital in the heart of the Castro and I later volunteered there as a pre-teen. Not knowing about gays and the fact that they exchanged body fluids (much like hetero couples) would have been impossible. I honestly can't remember a time when I didn't know about gay people and it really wasn't that complicated. I grew up in a Catholic household, went to Catholic schools and all of the adults around me managed to talk about homosexuals in a respectful, age-appropriate manner.

    [IMG]http://i41.tinypic.com/20uzlzc.jpg[/IMG]
    The Blog
  • Starlily----I understand the difference, but I would still think that this would be a bad move for the Anti-Pro 8 campaign because I think the majority of people won't see the difference and will assume that this is their fears being realized. So I don't think that this is a smart move for the campaign. I think that they have little to gain over this and way more to lose.
    image Emily 7-10-04
    My Food Blog Visit The Nest!
  • Emily --- But is it a better idea to bow to ignorance and not take any action? Maybe people won't see the distiction, but should a potential violation of law be ignored because people won't bother to educate themselves?

    I don't know how much of an impact the tax-exempt argument will have in the long run. I know that this aspect of the anti-8 campaign is getting the most attention right now, but it's really just one prong of the attack. The other prongs are still winding their way through court and isn't much of a media draw at this point.

    [IMG]http://i41.tinypic.com/20uzlzc.jpg[/IMG]
    The Blog
  • image starlily313:

    should a potential violation of law be ignored because people won't bother to educate themselves?

    Very well put.?

    IVF w/ ICSI #2 - fraternal twins born December 2010 at 36 weeks.
  • image starlily313:
    image 2bBush:

    my trouble is I'm very uncomfortable with it is:?a) that judges were willing to overturn a previous vote of the people against gay marriage -that they would patently ignore (like it or not) the will of the majority of citizens is disturbing.

    Judges have a duty to uphold the constitution. Hence why our government has a built in system of checks and balances. The previous vote was overturned because it was found to violate the state's constitution. Keep in mind that without judges taking a stand against discriminatory laws passed by citizens we would still have things like segregation and the inability for two different races to marry. Without judges looking at the constitution as a living document, we wouldn't have things like Miranda rights.

    The problem I have is that the way Prop. 22 was written didn't really violate the Sate of California's Constitution. I think it will be very interesting to see if the Cali judges end up legislating from the bench some more. It is their duty to uphold the Constitution only, not to reinvent it and legislate from the bench. Prop. 22 was definitional recognizing a marriage as only between a man and a woman. Nothing in that violates the?constitution?because homosexuality isn't protected under the constitution. The constitution of California like our federal constitution isn't a living document. It is a specific set of rights for persons and prohibitions against government. That is why there are specific?procedures?(like prop. 8) to amend the constitution. The constitution should be amended by a vote of the people not by judges appointed for life where the people have no recourse. Unlike England our Constitution is not and should not be fluid. It limits and prohibits government intrusion into our private lives and should be read as such.?Unfortunately?it has been expanded by Judges to the point where government is now in the bedroom, where it shouldn't be. Why should government regulate marriage at all??

    Segregation was properly changed by a constitutional amendment, the people spoke. It is not for judges to decide what is morally correct but what is legal and what is illegal.

    As for Miranda, it really shouldn't exist in the first place. Talk about judicial legislation!?

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