Faith-Based Initiatives Promote Religion

Tax funded “faith-based initiatives,” popularized by George W. Bush and expanded by Barack Obama, promote religion. If this point is not sufficiently obvious, a letter in today’s Denver Post brags about that fact:

As the Salvation Army understands, Jesus Christ really does free people from the shackles of addiction. Christ-centered, prayer-based addiction treatment is overwhelmingly more successful than any other addiction treatment program. And the same goes for reducing rates of prison recidivism.

I suspect President Barack Obama understands this, due to his willingness to continue federally funded, faith-based initiatives. And former President George W. Bush certainly understands this fact. Christ-centered, faith-based initiatives were found to be very successful in reducing recidivism in the Texas prison system during Mr. Bush’s tenure there as governor.

I don’t wish to address the specific claims of effectiveness, other than to mention that I don’t take them at face value. The key point is that Americans who aren’t Christians — or who are Christians but who oppose such tax spending — are forced to pay for “prayer-based,” “Christ-centered,” “faith-based” programs, in violation of their rights of property and conscience. The “faith-based initiatives” are grotesquely immoral. And they violate the First Amendment.