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Thursday, July 08, 2004

“MAINstream” Coalition hits KC area churches

Okay, so it’s my first post, and I’m tackling a rather hot-button issue right now. I need to get it off my chest and organize the myriad of thoughts going through my head about it anyway…

A group that calls themselves the “MAINstream Coalition” has become a common name in the news the last couple of weeks here in Kansas City. The group, which as been around for a few years now, has sent out letters to local churches in Johnson county warning them against endorsing or hinting to endorse or reject candidates in this year’s election. Kansas Attorney General, Phil Klein says that there IS a law against specifically endorsing or rejecting a political candidate as a church. The coalition plans to plant “spies” (their words) in several churches from now until the election to make sure the churches do not break this law. They threaten to take away the church’s tax-exempt status if they are found in violation.

I understand part of the premise for such a law. Having a leader, that people recognize as someone in high-standing, telling people who to vote for can influence voters in an election. Unfortunately, this thing happens publicly every day during an election. Other people of influence such as celebrities, political leaders, media, organizations (including non-for-profit), and others endorse political candidates all the time. It’s well known that the more “influential” people and organizations a candidate can have, the better the voters will see them simply because others value their opinion.
One big not-for-profit organization that has 501(c)(5) status is the National Rifle Association. It’s always big news when the NRA endorses a candidate for president, yet they don’t seem to fall under this law, or have their tax-exempt status taken away. This is CLEARLY an attack directed at the church alone. The coalition’s own “Statement of Purpose” states that its reason for existence is to inform people of “attempts to impose religious ideologies upon our governmental and public education institutions.”

The coalition, and other organizations like it, are pumping up their presence and attack of the church in this election year primarily due to hot-button issues, such as homosexual marriage, that the church is standing against. The coalition spawned a separate committee that labels itself as a political organization. From a direct quote from their website….

MAINstream Political Action Committee (MAIN*PAC) members have united to provide information about and support those candidates, regardless of party affiliation, who support the goals and positions of the MAINstream Coalition.
In 1998, the MAINstream Coalition formed its own Political Action Committee (PAC), in order to be able to work more effectively in the political arena. For the first time, MAINstream ideas could be used to evaluate and endorse candidates.

So the reasoning behind their thrust at the church is not only a way to further their mission against it, but to better the chances of winning for their political allies and endorsements. What on earth is “mainstream” about this?

What is the most disappointing about the entire thing is that they are doing this under the blanket of “separation of church and state.” I have no problem with the coalition having their own opinion or trying to spread their views, but they and others have twisted the constitution to their benefit. The first admendment of the Constitution states

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof."

Read that again… the separation of church and state has to do with the state interfering with the affairs of the church. NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND. This country was founded on Christian beliefs. Our own Declaration of Independence talks about God and his CREATION is its opening sentences.

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness

It’s sad to see the foundation of this great country, based on God, being compromised by atheists trying to spread their own religion...against the constitution that is designed to protect the church to begin with. It’s freedom OF religion… not freedom FROM religion folks. This is just the next in the path of eradicating God from this country by the evil one. Now is the whole “One nation under God” and the 10 Commandments on the courthouse steps. Next will be the national motto, “In God we Trust,” and the reprinting of money… and down the line from there… Isn’t it great that God is still in control though! With all these "spies" in the churches, maybe a few souls will be saved.

I could go on about their beliefs on evolution, prayer in the schools, limiting our religious duty to share the gospel, etc. but that’s enough for now. Maybe I’ll dive into the whole evolution farce sometime in the future.


At 3:03 PM, Blogger Petrock said...

You are developing into quite the blogger M.E. I hope to see more of your writings.

The group you are commenting on is sadly composed of people who are so insecure in their own beliefs that they feel anyone who dissents is some kind of threat. Perhaps they once wished for a pony but never got

Politics and faith have always been intertwined in our country and as long as they touch on the same issues they will continue to be.


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