Friday, March 04, 2005

Oh, this is rich.

From the Des Moines Register:

A national group of Christian lawyers is appealing to church leaders to join them in lobbying against the bankruptcy reform bill introduced by Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Ia.

The lawyers say the legislation runs contrary to the forgiveness of debt and charity required by the Bible.

"As Christian attorneys, we strongly believe that it was never God's intention to create a society where indebtedness was a crime or a badge of dishonor," Christian members of the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys wrote in a letter sent Feb. 26 to hundreds of church leaders across the nation.


The bill, which is receiving Senate debate, would make it harder for most people to receive full debt cancellation under Chapter 7 of the bankruptcy laws. More people would have to repay at least part of their debt, based on income.

The lawyers note that in the Old Testament, God did not outlaw borrowing and lending, but provided that loans would become discharged every seven years.

In response, Grassley said Congress could not be bound by biblical mandates because "the Constitution does not provide for a theocracy."

"I can't listen to Christian lawyers because I would be imposing the Bible on a diverse population," Grassley said. "I'll bet those lawyers wouldn't want us to impose the principles of forgiving debt every seven years. If that were the law, nobody would loan them money."

Darn that pesky Bible! Wouldn't want religion to get in the way of corporate giants collecting 29.5% interest, now would we?

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