Many in the liberal community have problems with the biases of religious charity groups and the impact they have on the poor people they serve. The following article explains how the Catholic Archdiocese in Washington DC is threatening to end aid for the poor if same-sex marriage becomes law.
This is a problem not only here at home but overseas, where our stoneage views on contraception have created a world where the most common cause of death for women age 15-44 is AIDS.
Many who are familiar with Bush Sr.'s Population Control task force and his focus on population as the root of fighting poverty instead of women's rights or development (like the Clintons) believe that the religious right has always sought to decrease population by dragging their feet on fighting disease. Of course this hasn't worked. And from there you can draw your own conclusions, but I can't count the number of times I've heard religious Americans vehemently insist that wars, droughts, famine, and disease are God's way of decreasing the population and we shouldn't second guess them. Meanwhile of course, in the poorest areas of the world, disease and other hardships only lead to women having larger families in order to support their home.
But this article linked above illustrates clearly why America needs to radically reform the way we help the poor in this country and overseas. Most civilized nations pay a much larger percentage of their GDP to secular public charity programs, while we focus more on religious donations and religious charities. But we can no longer rely on these corrupt faith-based groups to carry the weight of our charity and social services programs. We can't permit blackmail and religious bias in our political system to hurt the poor.
President Obama should reject the threats of the Catholic Church and announce a new era of tax based secular charity and social service programs to begin replacing religious charity institutions wherever they aren't getting the job done or are impeding progress because of religious bias.
We should never ever ever have to read something like this again when the health and safety of our working poor and homeless population (which by all accounts is about 1/4 veterans) is on the line:
The Catholic Archdiocese of Washington said Wednesday that it will be unable to continue the social service programs it runs for the District if the city doesn't change a proposed same-sex marriage law, a threat that could affect tens of thousands of people the church helps with adoption, homelessness and health care.
Update [2009-11-12 14:2:12 by certainly]: And I might add that these new secular social services institutions will create JOBS JOBS JOBS and could be paid for with a JOBS BILL or the stimulus funds.