Thursday, December 12, 2002

George W. and Trent Lott...on the same page?

Maybe this is a bit far fetched, but perhaps President Bush and Trent Lott don't are not that far apart on their views regarding integration/segregation. The New York Times editorial seems to disagree with this assessment, but if one looks at the new Executive Order signed by Bush on Faith Based initiatives, perhaps there is some connection.

"By far the most contentious of the changes is Bush's executive order informing federal agencies that religious organizations refusing to hire people of any faith can still win contracts.
Additionally, new regulations being unveiled Thursday from the Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Housing and Urban Development also preserve the right of religious groups providing certain government-financed services to hire based on religion.
Broadly, Bush's directive tells federal agencies to ensure religious groups are treated equally with others in all respects, said the officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity. Federal contractors also can no longer be denied federal money for displaying religious icons, such as a cross or a menorah."

I don't know, but to me, this just seems like state sponsored discrimination. Organizations that have discriminatory hiring practices on the basis of religion should not be given federal funding. There is a fundamental inequity in this provision. In a truly secular society such as America, a country created on religious freedom and pluralism, the government should not even consider sanctioning discriminatory groups by giving them funding. By giving groups that hire based on religion funding, the government is giving its tacit ok to discrimination. Instead of trying to be exclusive in a society that is becoming more so, perhaps the government should be promoting greater inclusion, and offering incentives to groups that don't discriminate, let alone hire on the base of religious beliefs.

How far really are Trent Lott and George W. Bush?

Incidentally, here is a link to an article I wrote over a year ago based mainly on the faith based initiative.


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