We recently posted an article by Tom Del Becarro from his Political Vanguard site on “What if Obama Wins?” As for faith-based organizations providing federally-financed social services Sen. Obama goes medieval. According to Greg Baylor, Obama will “require the federal government’s FBO partners to follow Title VII and other federal anti-discrimination requirements. But the details of his plan are different than this. Title VII forbids religious job discrimination by secular organizations but includes an exemption so that faith-based organizations can make employment decisions that reflect their religious commitments. This general federal freedom is restricted in some federal programs, and some state and local governments also restrict it. But the general federal rule is that FBOs receiving federal funds retain their religious staffing freedom.”
This is especially onerous when individuals seeking assistance are choosing the service provider of their choice and spending the federal voucher through choice not by government fiat. No one is “forced” to attend some Christian-identity drug rehab like they are forced to attend some government-run school or have to pay extra for a qualified and educationally certified elementary or secondary school of their choice. While they are working hard on freedom of choice in pre-school, at this writing, the teacher unions hold no sway over colleges as these still have some freedoms ala the GI and Pell Grants to accept government vouchers from individuals selecting the educational product and services of choice.
When Congress makes a law that chooses one worldview over another to be the “only” legitimate worldview to participate in the public square—that is Establishment of Religion and a clear violation of the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights that Constitutionally limit the power of government to nullify the rights of the people and States: Congress shall make no law.
Baylor continues…”Sen. Obama would create an unprecedented new restriction: every FBO that accepts federal funds would be stripped of its religious staffing freedom when it comes to hiring people to run the federally funded program. There has never been such a sweeping restriction in the past. Some FBOs may find this restriction acceptable. Others will find it intolerable and will be forced to walk away from partnerships with government agencies that award federal funds.
“Some powerful forces would like to restrict religious staffing even further. There is no doubt that this is an unpopular freedom for many people. But unpopular doesn’t mean unimportant.
“Faith-based organizations, faith community leaders, and advocates of religious freedom should ask Senator Obama to revisit his guidelines and reject proposals that force faith-based organizations to suppress their religious identity.”
Congress shall make no law.