Churches collect billions of dollars in the U.S. every year and few use that money to sufficiently help their community, and waste money on lavish lifestyles for their staff. Taxing the churches would enable a set percentage of their collections to go towards feeding america's hungry and homeless, animal shelters and protection organizations , education, and more!
That yes we should tax churches, why the hell not. For too long have I heard churches talk about helping those in need of food, shelter, advice, or money that they would help without a doubt. Yet time after time have I seen churches throw these exact people out, while the pastor has the biggest house newest car freshest clothes and still ask for money from their church goers that can barely provide for themselves.
I would advocate a graduated scale for these ecclesiastic institutions. The more revenue a church brings in and the more valuable their property and assets, the higher the tax. The "plant a seed" narrative from televangelists and mega-churches asking for donations in exchange for divine favor is absurd and akin to the historic Catholic indulgences. I will cite Televangelist Creflo Dollar beginning a $65 fundraiser to purchase a private jet, *in addition* to one he owned in the first place. I will also cite mega-preacher Joel Osteen's $40 million net worth and $10.5 million home.
Why are churches exempt from taxes? Jesus even said that people should pay their taxes. ("Give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar.")
A lot of churches are also centralized. All their money goes to the head church who redistributes it as they see fit. That's stupid. Church money should stay with the church and be taxed, then redistributed to the community. Church employees should receive minimum pay, enough to live off of only, as their job isn't meant to be profitable.
US churches received an official federal income tax exemption in 1894, and they have been unofficially tax-exempt since the country's founding. All 50 US states and the District of Columbia exempt churches from paying property tax. Donations to churches are tax-deductible. The debate continues over whether or not these tax benefits should be retained.
Proponents argue that a tax exemption keeps the government out of church finances and thus upholds the separation of church and state. They say that churches deserve a tax break because they provide crucial social services, and that 200 years of church tax exemptions have not turned America into a theocracy.
Opponents argue that giving churches special tax exemptions violates the separation of church and state, and that tax exemptions are a privilege, not a constitutional right. They say that in tough economic times the government cannot afford what amounts to a subsidy worth billions of dollars every year.
The Church of Scientology battled the IRS for 25 years to regain its tax exemption after the IRS withdrew it 1967, claiming the organization was a commercial enterprise rather than a church. The IRS decision was upheld by numerous courts, despite Scientology and its members bringing 2,200 lawsuits against the IRS and its officials over the course of the dispute. The New York Times revealed in Mar. 1997 that during Scientology's campaign against the IRS, the organization's lawyers had "hired private investigators to dig into the private lives of I.R.S. Officials and to conduct surveillance operations to uncover potential vulnerabilities."
In 1991, Scientology's ecclesiastical leader David Miscavige met with then-IRS Commissioner Fred T. Goldberg Jr. And offered to call off the group's lawsuits in exchange for regaining its tax-exempt status. The New York Times stated that in agreeing to Miscavige's proposal, Goldberg "created a special committee to negotiate a settlement with Scientology outside normal agency procedures" and that IRS "tax analysts were ordered to ignore the substantive issues in reviewing the decision," according to IRS files. In order to receive the exemption, Scientology agreed to pay the IRS $12.5 million and "agreed to more Federal Government intrusion than perhaps any religious organization has ever allowed."
In Nov. 2008, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (Mormon church) was accused by protesters of violating its tax-exempt status by supporting the passage of California's Proposition 8, a ballot initiative outlawing civil marriages for same-sex couples. However, Americans United for Separation of Church and State (AU) Executive Director Barry W. Lynn explained that the Mormons "almost certainly have not violated their tax exemption. While the tax code has a zero tolerance for endorsements of candidates, the tax code gives wide latitude for churches to engage in discussions of policy matters and moral questions, including when posed as initiatives."
The campaign ban issue rose to prominence in the lead up to the 2012 US presidential election.
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While feeding the hungry is a worthwhile thing to do. I do not think that we should target churches and make them pay for the food, if you are going to feed the hungry, then tax everyone! Not just religious people! That could start a revolution which could even lead to war.
Religion is a bunch of BS, and churches just perpetuate it with their nonsense. We should get rid of religion, and what better way to do so than to use the power of the state. Taxing churches is a good way to get a foot in the door on this issue.
No, churches should not be taxed to feed the hungry. Churches already do charity work. Additionally, no one should be taxed to feed the hungry. It is our own responsibility to feed ourselves and our family. If one chooses to donate to help feed the hunger, that's the prerogative of said individuals.
No, why? Churches are a non-profit organizations and already reach out to a lot of homeless and other countries. All churches I've been to always hold a food-drive, send boxes with items to other countries, etc. etc. So doing this would be pointless and really just targeting churches for no reason.
If we were to tax churches we would have to tax a lot of other non-profit organizations, soo eeyyyy no.
We must look at what a church does. A church is not a business. Those who don't attend it, that is their decision; but a church is not a business as everyone perceives. A church is a school where anyone can learn the teaching of the Bible. Because of this, they shouldn't be taxed for the fact that their not a business comparatively to a larger cooperation.
Secondly, why infringe on them with taxes. Admittedly feeding the hungry is a good cause, but why hurt one group to help another? Why not just cooperatively work together to find the solution to the problem? And we must also consider the fact that churches do these sort of programs with feeding the hungry, given with cherishable donations, and the still work. Why tax them, when they do something to help out already?
Finally, why churches specifically? The question is not referring to any other group, but solely churches. Why kill religious beliefs with taxes just because of feeding the hungry, when there are other alternatives. If we really want to feed the hungry that bad, why not tax tax payers more? Why only churches?
For these reasons, a church should not be taxed.