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  1. #1
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    Christian legal organization sues City for Special Rights

    http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcont....12219338.html


    Liberty Legal Institute sues Plano over zoning rule

    05:23 PM CDT on Tuesday, June 17, 2008


    By THEODORE KIM / The Dallas Morning News

    The conservative Liberty Legal Institute today sued the City of Plano to overturn a city zoning rule that the institute contends is unconstitutional because it will force a Vietnamese church to relocate.

    The city requires non-residential buildings — including churches, community centers and hospitals — that are located in residential areas to be on lots that are at least two acres in size.

    The institute argues the rule is unfair because it will prohibit the 50-member Vietnamese Baptist Church from locating near downtown Plano.

    The church recently purchased the roughly 1.2-acre lot in the 1600 block of G Avenue, where it plans to establish a church. Leaders later sought an exemption from the city’s two-acre zoning requirement, but a city board denied the request.

    A city attorney did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment.

    The lawsuit is the latest in a series of legal actions by the Plano-based pro-Christian advocacy group against both the city and Plano school district.

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    This group doesn't pay taxes . . . so why do they think they deserve special privileges that non-religious groups don't get?

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    and this has been another edition of obscure news with tock

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    Quote Originally Posted by roidattack View Post
    and this has been another edition of obscure news with tock
    But not so obscure of a demand.

    Christian organizations demand tax-exempt status (when they don't pay taxes, then everyone else has to chip in extra to pay their fair share), and then they demand that gays not be allowed to marry. So, the gay people they preach against have to pay extra taxes so they can be tax-exempt. Ya, gay people end up paying some of the anti-gay churches' bills.
    What's up with that?

    IMHO, Christians should be free to speak their opinions about gay people. But they should also pay their own bills, and not rely on tax exemptions to help them afford their operations. Gay people in particular shouldn't have to pay extra taxes to subsidize Christian homophobes.

    Don't you agree?

    Gay people don't want special privileges. Christian groups do. Tsk tsk tsk . . .

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    Separation of church and state brother..the govt cant mess with the church. You dont think Jesse "the shakedown" Jackson isnt 401 or 501? Please.


    Quote Originally Posted by Tock View Post
    But not so obscure of a demand.

    Christian organizations demand tax-exempt status (when they don't pay taxes, then everyone else has to chip in extra to pay their fair share), and then they demand that gays not be allowed to marry. So, the gay people they preach against have to pay extra taxes so they can be tax-exempt. Ya, gay people end up paying some of the anti-gay churches' bills.
    What's up with that?

    IMHO, Christians should be free to speak their opinions about gay people. But they should also pay their own bills, and not rely on tax exemptions to help them afford their operations. Gay people in particular shouldn't have to pay extra taxes to subsidize Christian homophobes.

    Don't you agree?

    Gay people don't want special privileges. Christian groups do. Tsk tsk tsk . . .

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    Quote Originally Posted by roidattack View Post
    Separation of church and state brother..the govt cant mess with the church. You dont think Jesse "the shakedown" Jackson isnt 401 or 501? Please.
    I'm 100% for separation of church and state. It's a great idea.

    I'm also for 100% of churches paying for their own expenses, and not assuming they are entitled to free services paid for by taxpayers, such as free police and fire protection.

    Separation of church and state? Fine by me. If a church has a big tax-exempt building, and if they refuse to pay the same fee (based on square footage, market value, or whatever) that local home and business owners pay for their police and fire protection, then let 'em burn, and let the burglers steal their stuff.

    Churches are not entitled to free taxpayer - funded public services. If they want some, they gotta pay for 'em.

    Here is one major difference between gays and churches -- gay people pay taxes and don't demand special rights. Churches don't pay taxes, and beleive they are entitled to special rights. This one example I cited is representative of 99.9 of all religious groups in the USA (the last .1% being the rare Unitarian congregation that voluntarily pays property taxes).

    So screw 'em . . . screw 'em all . . .

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    I'm 100% in favor of eliminating all tax exemptions for churches, period. I'm also 100% in favor of letting them preach anything they want. They can also turn their pulpits into political campaign headquarters, for all I care. It's not a good idea for either religion or politics, IMHO. But I don't have to subscribe to either, thank god.

    But giving a church tax-exempt status while allowing it to advocate for politicians gives it a privileged position in America that no other person or organization has. The church ends up with special rights. What's up with that BS?



    http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/Vote2...5198068&page=1

    Pastors Challenge Law, Endorse Candidates From Pulpit


    Ministers Pit 'Freedom of Expression' vs. 'Separation of Church and State'


    By RUSSELL GOLDMAN
    June 20, 2008

    Few Americans would invite an investigation by the Internal Revenue Service, but that's exactly what Minnesota pastor Gus Booth wanted when he stood behind his pulpit and told his congregation God wanted them to vote Republican.

    In an election where candidates openly discuss their faith and are regularly seen in churches, and a time when pastors' sermons lead the politics sections of newspapers, one might be excused for not knowing that it is illegal for a church to endorse or oppose a candidate for president.
    But when Booth addressed the members of his Warroad Community Church one Sunday in May and told them, "If you are a Christian, you cannot support a candidate like Barack Obama or Hillary Clinton for president," he very much knew he was violating the law. He even wrote a letter to the IRS explaining what he had said and challenging the tax collection agency to do something about it.

    Churches and other non-profit groups like charities and universities do not have to pay taxes. That exemption, however, comes with a price. Churches, and by extension the pastors who serve them in an official capacity, are not allowed to endorse or oppose political candidates.
    Booth, 34, is one of several religious leaders who this year hope to challenge federal law by flouting the regulations about endorsing candidates from the pulpit — a move that could potentially cost them their tax-exempt status, creating financial ruin for many congregations.

    The separation of church and state may be one of our democracy's most vaunted values, but its enforcement falls to one of our government's most derided institutions — the IRS.

    First Amendment Protection?

    Booth and other religious leaders who want to challenge the government believe their rights to freedom of speech and religion, enshrined in the First Amendment, permit them to say whatever they want, wherever they want. Those rights, they say, should trump a 54-year-old tax code.
    "The government is trying to censor me and other religious leaders," Booth told ABC News. "I may be taking on the IRS, but the IRS has taken on the Constitution unchallenged since 1954. I feel like the only law that should dictate what I am allowed to say is the First Amendment."

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    In your story it says the church would have to relocate but then it says the church hasnt been built yet. Which is it?

    ...and its not that hard to be tax exempt. All kinds of bullshit organizations, like jacksons, are exempt. You going to change that as well?

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    Quote Originally Posted by roidattack View Post
    In your story it says the church would have to relocate but then it says the church hasnt been built yet. Which is it?
    The way I read the article, the church may or may not already have a building, and they purchased another 1.2 acre lot for another building in an area that they want to be. They don't have to relocate anywhere they don't want to.





    ...and its not that hard to be tax exempt. All kinds of bullshit organizations, like jacksons, are exempt. You going to change that as well?
    Nope.
    But any tax-exempt organization is subject to the same rules, regulations, and laws that all the rest of us have to follow. No special rights for them, and no special rights for churches, either.

    Don't you agree?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tock View Post
    The way I read the article, the church may or may not already have a building, and they purchased another 1.2 acre lot for another building in an area that they want to be. They don't have to relocate anywhere they don't want to.






    Nope.
    But any tax-exempt organization is subject to the same rules, regulations, and laws that all the rest of us have to follow. No special rights for them, and no special rights for churches, either.

    Don't you agree?

    It depends on what your talking about..in the case listed in your original post I would say the church shouldnt get any special treatment.

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    Quote Originally Posted by roidattack View Post
    It depends on what your talking about..in the case listed in your original post I would say the church shouldnt get any special treatment.
    Whaddaya say we agree to agree more often . . .


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    I'm starting the church of me. I hereby demand tax exempt status!

  13. #13
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    lol, dont push it.


    Quote Originally Posted by Tock View Post
    Whaddaya say we agree to agree more often . . .


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