Thursday, March 17, 2005

Religious Subsidy Watch

Michigan has opened a "faith-based programs" office:
Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm told a meeting of 700 religious leaders that social-services agencies and religious groups share common values and "sing out of the same hymnal" in their mission to help the poor and vulnerable. "The government isn't separate from you, it is you," she said.


Granholm made no new funding promises to church leaders, although the office will help religious groups access federal funding. The governor also said churches cannot discriminate based on religion, and Wendy Waggenheim, spokeswoman for the American Civil Liberties Union of Michigan, echoed that message. "No one can be required to pray before they get soup at a soup kitchen,"she said.

Minnesota is considering the same thing, but the proposal is being met with skepticism. Among other things, the Freedom From Religion Foundation is threatening a lawsuit.


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