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Selected Works

Richard W Garnett

Religion

Taxation-State and Local

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A Quiet Faith? Taxes, Politics, And The Privatization Of Religion, Richard W. Garnett Aug 2016

A Quiet Faith? Taxes, Politics, And The Privatization Of Religion, Richard W. Garnett

Richard W Garnett

The government exempts religious associations from taxation and, in return, restricts their putatively political expression and activities. This exemption-and-restriction scheme invites government to interpret and categorize the means by which religious communities live out their vocations and engage the world. But government is neither well-suited nor to be trusted with this kind of line-drawing. What's more, this invitation is dangerous to authentically religious consciousness and associations. When government communicates and enforces its own view of the nature of religion - i.e., that it is a private matter - and of its proper place - i.e., in the private sphere, not …