During the presidential campaign, Obama said he would expand George W. Bush's faith-based initiatives because "the challenges we face today...are simply too big for government to solve alone." But he also promised to end the constitutional violations of Bush's faith-based programs by requiring that federal dollars that go to churches, temples and mosques "only be used on secular programs" and by forbidding programs that accept federal money from proselytizing or discriminating against people in hiring on the basis of religion.
Since he has taken office, however, Obama has backtracked or stalled on these pledges. Perhaps more disturbing, Obama's OFBNP, while still a work in progress, is plagued by a lack of transparency and accountability and has seemingly already been exploited as a tool for rewarding religious constituencies with government jobs--exactly the problems that marked Bush's faith-based initiative.
Saturday, July 25, 2009
Office of religion still endangering church/state separation
Via Frederick Clarkson, Sarah Posner reports on President Obama's expanded and re-named (Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships) version of President Bush's faith based initiatives.
Posted by Hume's Ghost at 7/25/2009