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Frist Amendment issue

Letter to the Editor

In regard to conscientious objection, be reminded that during the second world war, objectors were inducted into the Civilian public service. The religions from which their objection arose managed and essentially paid for that service. Today, there is the alternative service for conscientious objectors operated by the Selective Service System.

If you hold that “Government” should not inject itself into religious matters, then you must agree that Mormons can have more than one wife. This was a key belief in Mormonism prior to Utah statehood. The Federal Government forced Mormons to abandon this religious belief in order for Utah to attain statehood. As I recall, the Federal Government executed two or three of the key resisters. Several faiths allow plural marriage, including Judaism before the eighth century A.D. (look up levirate marriage). Mostly it is just self-described, “Christians,” who have imposed monogamy in this country- First Amendment notwithstanding.

“Churches” have been less than honest about many of the dilemmas of faith that they have created for themselves. Those dilemmas arise from the “churches” signing on for tax exemption. There are conditions set by “Government” for tax exempt status. But, now, some loud screaming “churches” are unhappy with those conditions that they freely entered into. Frankly, tax exemption is a deal done with a “Devil”, but I am not all certain which side represents the Devil. The argument is strong on either side. “Churches” can escape most of these requirements if they relinquish their tax exempt status.

Within that context, published in the U.S. Census Bureau, Statistical Abstracts of the United States: 2012, Table 75. Self-Described Religious Identification of Adult Population: 1990, 2001, and 2008 is a list of about 50 “Religious Groups” in the United States. My group is one of the 50.

I pay exorbitant real property taxes in Essex County, as does any non-tax exempt land owner. These taxes are used to support local infrastructure. Tax exempt organizations, whether religious or otherwise, do not pay real property tax to support the infrastructure but they use it. I pay a share of the taxes for those religions not withstanding that I do not belong to the other 49 and, by virtue of my choice of faith, I reject as wrong if not down right evil those other 49 religions. Similarly, I pay a share of the taxes for “Non-profits” which use the infrastructure but to which I would not give a penny, some because their avowed purposes are against my faith.

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