I am a firm believer in separation of church and state. I don't believe any one religion should be allowed to influence policy or politics or promote one candidate over another. Churches are here to provide spiritual teachings for those who seek such things; they are here to provide comfort and support for those who need them; they are here to shine a light in the dark for those people who might be lost and are seeking a new path in life.
What they aren't here to do is fund hate.
Catholic Church, anyone?
In 2004 the Catholic Church gave more than $500,000 to help enact a same-sex marriage ban in Michigan. Couldn't that money have been better used to fund services to help the poor? counseling sessions for the young men who suffered abuse by pedophile priests? No, the church used the money to fund a political movement to ban same-sex marriage.
In 2008 the Catholic Church spent $200,000 of its own money to fund the Prop H8 campaign in California. In addition, they spent another $1 million funneling hate through organizations like the Knights of Columbus.
And now, up in Maine, the latest front line in the fight for marriage equality, the Catholic Church has spent $100,000 and is promising to spend another $2 million to fight against same-sex marriage.
Why is the church funding political campaigns? Why aren't they using this money, some nearly $4 million, to fund other issues they say are near and dear to their hearts, like health care? They say that health care is an important issue for the church because the lack of adequate care directly affects causes the church also says are very important: poverty, children, and immigration.
Just last week President Obama gathered numerous faith groups together to talk about universal health care. He worked with Jewish organizations, Methodist organizations, Baptist organizations, Muslim organizations, and evangelical organizations; but not one Catholic Bishop. The Catholics were busy urging Lutherans not to accept gay men and women into the clergy.
The Catholics say they want health care, but are spending millions fighting a different battle. They say they support a public option on health care but are working to keep gay men and women out of the clergy. They say they want to end poverty but spend millions fighting for discrimination.
We need health care and they want to fund hate.