When John F. Kennedy was running for president in 1960, many people were worried that he would in some way take marching orders from the Pope if he were elected, considering that he was a Roman Catholic and not a White Anglo-Saxon Protestant. His response to these ideas was that while he would not want the government to influence or control churches, he would expect a reciprocal arrangement, that a church would not try to influence him or any government official. It was quite a nice statement about the separation of church and state, but it seems to me that such reciprocity no longer holds. Catholic bishops threaten excommunication if some people vote for a candidate who supports abortion rights, Southern preachers rail against Obama and the democrats, and Muslim imams urge punishing the Great Satan. In my opinion, this is an unfair use of their power and influence, and it respects no boundaries between church and state. If taxing religions in this way seems like an infringement on the right of free speech, I would say that with the privilege of being tax-free incurs a duty and a responsibility. I have the right of free speech, but I pay taxes to a government that allows this freedom. How one would measure the degree of political activism of a church is an aspect I will have to leave to more obsessive minds than mine.


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Come Cruise with Thom Hartmann in July 2020

Join me for an exciting Bermuda getaway aboard Oceania Cruises, the world’s leading culinary and destination-focused cruise line. Set sail on the reimagined Insignia for 7 nights beginning July 25th 2020. Take advantage of Oceania Cruises’ OLife Choice promotion, where you can choose shore excursions, a beverage package, or onboard credit – Oceania Cruises also includes Wifi! You'll also receive complimentary gratuities, a $50 onboard credit and two exclusive cocktail parties. Did I mention we are planning special onboard events with yours truly? Prices start at $1199.

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Trump Briefs His Buddies at Mar-A-Lago but Not Congress - WHAT?!

Thom plus logo Donald Trump refused to brief the only branch of government that has the power to make war about his attack on Iranian General Soleimani.