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View Diary: It's Time to Tax The Churches (72 comments)

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  •  The tax exempt status of churches (0+ / 0-)

    goes far beyond any exemptions given for any other non-profit. The New York Times (Diana B. Henriques) did an article that said there are over 200 exemptions for churches, so many that there are lawyers who do nothing but advise churches on how to pay no taxes.

    Churches pastors are allowed to totally write off their houses down to the toilet paper. No other heads of non-profits get that privledge. In fact, the heads of the non-profit Freedom From Religion Foundation are suing the IRS (they've been granted status to sue by one court already) for favoring religion on this tax issue.

    Churches are claiming janitors as "essential personnel" to get them written off (choir directors, organ players, etc.)

    Churches pay no property taxes and yet have fire service, police service and other community services, which means the rest of us pay more to make up the difference. The average citizen in the US pays $900 more in taxes to make up for the loss from religious tax exemptions.  

    I could go on and on, but here is a basic fact as to why the granting of tax exemption for churches should be abolished.  When a church applies for this status with the IRS, it is the IRS that decides whether that church qualifies as a religion. So we essentially have the government deciding what is and isn't a religion.... a clear violation of the First Amendment!

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