Please carefully consider the following items as I try to make the case that the US Tax Code known as Section 501(c)(3) granting tax exempt status to various charitable organizations, particularly religions organizations, is unconstitutional.
First Amendment to the United States Constitution.
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
Exemption Requirements – Section 501(c)(3) Organizations
To be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, an organization must be organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3), and none of its earnings may inure to any private shareholder or individual. In addition, it may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates. (emphasis mine)
“ … the Department of Health and Human Services has ruled that religious institutions have a one-year exemption before they must comply with the requirement under the Affordable Care Act that employers provide co-pay free coverage for contraception in their health insurance plans.”
Many years ago I read They Preached Liberty. The book is An Anthology of Timely Quotations From New England ministers at the time of the American Revolution. These preachers spoke publically from the pulpit on the great issue of the day – political and religious liberty, and at the risk of their own lives. I came across this book early in my new life as a Christian, and since then I have noticed there are few preachers who step into the political arena, with the notable exceptions of D. J. Kennedy, Jerry Falwell and Pat Robinson.
In recent months I have begun to understand the reason for such timidity in the pulpit and its name is 501(c)(3).
501(c)(3) is a clever trap that lures preachers, priests and rabbis into voluntarily surrendering their (and their congregations as well) religious and speech freedoms as set forth in the Bill of Rights. And now the Catholic Church and others are facing the hard choices presented by the dictates of 501(c)(3).
The 501(c)(3) statute is now coming home to roost in the form of a direct confrontation between this statute and the Roman Catholic Church and others.
The First Amendment on its face clearly gives the Roman Catholic Church and its priests and bishops the unequivocal right; to speak freely and attempt to influence legislation, and participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates or current office holders, by name if deemed necessary, to make its voice heard in the public arena. This holds for all religious entities whether they be Catholic, Protestant, Jewish or even Islam.
But we have now come to the point where an autocratic administration is forcing the issue of 501(c)(3) vs. the First Amendment with the clear intent of negating the First Amendment in favor of a particular health care mandate. Rest assured that if this battle goes forth with the administration not backing down, 501(c)(3) will be used as a club against the church. Also rest assured that even if the administration backs down it will view this episode as merely a trial balloon and will seek to impose its will in other ways in the future.
If you need a strong hint as to where Mr. Obama’s mind set is with regards the Constitution, look no further than his pre-Super Bowl NBC interview where he says, “It turns out that our Founders designed a system that makes it more difficult to bring about change that I would like sometimes.”Read more: at http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0212/72617.html#ixzz1lsma7id3
Surprise surprise, could it be that there are other parts of the government other than the executive? This attitude is not unique to Barack Obama, but is the mantra of what is known as the Progressive movement which has little regard for the Constitution. Unfortunately, the Democratic Party is filled with such thinking, and to a much lesser extent the Republican Party.
In several other essays I have written about the Tea Party being labeled as a terrorist organization. Well, I’m beginning to understand why. It’s probably because Tea Party type people present a clear threat to the Marxist/Statist type of utopian government that Progressives seek to achieve at the expense of individual liberty.
Read also this essay by Brent Bozell – The Secular Media Vs. Religious Liberty – Page 1 – Brent Bozell – Townhall Conservative
What say you, is 501(c)(3) unconstitutional?