Saturday, July 24, 2010

Let's Talk About Morality

Is morality a statement of our own ethics as defined by society or have some of our ethics been handed to us by a religious body of people? As the good Reverend in Moral Orel said, "...some random guys." are always the ones who seem to be making decisions for us. That Those of us who chant or meditate would like the world to understand that prayer is a matter of asking for help where as we are declaring something to ourselves in or actions. I defer that nonsense to my friends at and their videos surrounding the character named "Moral Orel". But we have to admit that it exists. The supreme court can't keep the self-righteous and self-proclaimed morally fit people who make up their own rules on the fly in everyday life to stomp on someone else's constitutional rights. Recently the Supreme Court allowed corporations, as if they are individuals, to be considered people with the right to self expression, in reference to who they want to donate money to, in order to get around the soft money contribution limits set by our government to give the average person the chance to get elected to political office. In that, they expressed that no one should be allowed to surpress someone else's right to free speech and free expression.
Lately someone else got tromped on. The lady who was running for office a seat on the Wisconsin State Assembly was told she had so many words (5) to express who she is and what she is about that would be on her ballot selection button, in the ballot box during the election. Her Choice of words, instead of some common catch phrase like, "A Law and Order Candidate" or "A man of the people", was instead, "Not the whiteman's bitch". The state election board declared this was not acceptable and I will rather let Ieshu Griffin explain herself as to what her intent was and her argument with them. She stated that, "I was not trying to be derogatory towards any one person, I said, "The Whiteman",..." and she went on to describe and detail accounts of different entertainers who made similar statements. She said she was referring to the government, not a specific race when she made the comment "...the white man", and stated that bitch pertains to a dog that rolls over and that her statement meant that she wasn't going to roll over and that she saw nothing in the actual state statutes or election rules that said that her statement was wrong. She also used a case of a judge using the "N" word to make a statement to a person.
My personal comment is that this woman did not come across as being ignorant or disrespectful and only seemed confused that her statement, in light of the Supreme Court's decisions on use of speech, was considered out of bounds and asked that they reconsider.
My only fear for Ms. Griffin is that she will become, because of all of the notoriety in the media over this, the "Not the white man's bitch" bitch. There are already comments all over the internet from certain people who are obviously trying to be disrespectful by saying, "I am a white man and I never asked this bitch to be MY bitch." As a white male who happens to love black women and has made the choice to allow myself to date, live with, and love women outside my own race who are African American because of my physical preference to them, then I feel I need to say, I would never consider using that language towards my girlfriend or any other black woman. But, as a citizen of the United States who has watched most of Congress become a rich old white man's club, I can fully understand, especially for a female who is facing what a lot of people still consider a mostly male arena (politics) to want to make that statement. She does not want anyone to believe she is a grateful to be a token and will roll over in order to keep that position. Unfortunately, in Wisconsin, she made a statement but it didn't win her an election. The San Francisco Chronicle's AP story is available at One judge was absent, three agreed with Ms. Griffin and two opposed and she needed a 4 person vote. It is too recent to tell but I am going to be watching that race, even though it is outside my state, to see how she does. I am alright with the ideat that her message was not aimed at "the white man" but to her potential minority voters who are wary of politicians who actually are the "token opportunistic minority" candidates that will kiss up to anyone in order to get the job instead of the responsibility to represent ALL of their constituents.

Friday, July 23, 2010


Recently, as I listened to a speech on the separation of church and state, the word, secular came up. I knew it had a religious context definition, but I didn't really understand the entire definition. When I typed secular into WikiPedia, it said, "...Secularism is the concept that government or other entities should exist separately from religion and/or religious beliefs.
In one sense, secularism may assert the right to be free from religious rule and teachings, and the right to freedom from governmental imposition of religion upon the people within a state that is neutral on matters of belief. (See also Separation of church and state and Laïcité.) In another sense, it refers to the view that human activities and decisions, especially political ones, should be based on evidence and fact unbiased by religious influence. (See also public reason.)
Secularism draws its intellectual roots from Greek and Roman philosophers such as Marcus Aurelius and Epicurus, medieval Muslim polymaths such as Ibn Rushd, Enlightenment thinkers like Denis Diderot, Voltaire, John Locke, James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, and Thomas Paine, and modern freethinkers, agnostics and atheists such as Bertrand Russell and Robert Ingersoll.
The purposes and arguments in support of secularism vary widely. In European laicism, it has been argued that secularism is a movement toward modernization, and away from traditional religious values (also known as "secularisation"). This type of secularism, on a social or philosophical level, has often occurred while maintaining an official state church or other state support of religion. In the United States, some argue that state secularism has served to a greater extent to protect religion from governmental interference, while secularism on a social level is less prevalent. Within countries as well, differing political movements support secularism for varying reasons.

Monday, July 19, 2010

What Needs to Be Done

All of my information is taken directly from the Internal Revenue Website at,,id=96099,00.html and not a misquote or rationalisation. Warning: ALL of the sites that I could find with this information on it reworded it in order to minimalize the illegality of a church trying to be a political action committee, which they are free to do, if they don't mind losing their tax-exempt status. The churches are arguing that they are supporting candidates which are supporting the churches. As in the case of G.W. Bush and the church in Crawford, Texas- he enrolled and donated money as a member of the church, enrolled his whole family as members but never attended. For political
reasons, he supposedly supported small town values until his term was over and then he moved back to Conneticut where he was from. Why is it that churches only listen to politicians who tell them what they want to hear without studying the situation? Because everyone assumes that their religious leader (e.g. pastor, rabbi, deacon, etc.) would NEVER lie to them or give them false information without actually researching it themselves. Guess what?
The question one who follows any religion has to ask themselves is: "Do you want the government involved in your church?" As soon as you are allied with them (government), they will make their own rules for your church as they always do.
Eventually there will be a government controlled, government approved religion that all U.S. Citizens will have to belong to.
The question that the non-religious person has to ask themselves is: "Do you want religion involved in your goverment?" That has never worked out well, dating back to, and before - the crusades. The constant purpose of governments to guard and protect their own people's interests with authority and power, along with the ability to abuse power by using military force to manipulate the will of the people of any country, including one's own, has always led to abuse. It almost immediately leads to government officials thinking that a religious deity is beckoning them to do "...the will of God..." or "Allah" or some other deity or power
and then we have another unwinnable war. I like to think of the United States as being superior to these things but, even though some popular urban myths include that our founding fathers were Christians (they were Deists and anyone who tells you different is a liar.) That in itself should point out to you who the problem is. As long as our churches break the law without any regard for their own tax-exempt status, then, they are setting the worst example possible.

Taken directly from the United States Internal Revenue Service Rules Website at:,,id=96099,00.html.

Exemption Requirements - Section 501(c)(3) Organizations

To be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, an organization must be organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3), and none of its earnings may inure to any private shareholder or individual. In addition, it may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates.

Organizations described in section 501(c)(3) are commonly referred to as charitable organizations. Organizations described in section 501(c)(3), other than testing for public
safety organizations, are eligible to receive tax-deductible contributions in accordance with Code section 170.
The organization must not be organized or operated for the benefit of private interests, and no part of a section 501(c)(3) organization's net earnings may inure to the benefit of any private shareholder or individual. If the organization engages in an excess benefit transaction with a
person having substantial influence over the organization, an excise tax may be imposed on the person and any organization managers agreeing to the transaction.
Section 501(c)(3) organizations are restricted in how much political and legislative (lobbying) activities they may conduct. For a detailed discussion, see Political and Lobbying Activities. For more information about lobbying activities by charities, see the article Lobbying Issues; for more information about political activities of charities, see the FY-2002 CPE topic Election Year Issues.
Additional Information

Application Process Step by Step: Questions and answers that will help an organization determine if it is eligible to apply for recognition of exemption from federal income taxation under IRC section 501(a) and, if so, how to proceed.

Taken directly from the United States Internal Revenue Service Rules Website at:,,id=163395,00.html on the IRS website concerning political actions during an election:

The Restriction of Political Campaign Intervention by Section 501(c)(3) Tax-Exempt Organizations

Under the Internal Revenue Code, all section 501(c)(3) organizations are absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. Contributions to political campaign funds or public statements of position (verbal or written) made on behalf of the organization in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office clearly violate the prohibition against political campaign activity. Violating this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes.
Certain activities or expenditures may not be prohibited depending on the facts and circumstances. For example, certain voter education activities (including presenting public forums and publishing voter education guides) conducted in a non-partisan manner do not constitute prohibited political campaign activity. In addition, other activities intended to encourage people to participate in the electoral process, such as voter registration and get-out-the-vote drives, would not be prohibited political campaign activity if conducted in a non-partisan manner.

On the other hand, voter education or registration activities with evidence of bias that (a) would favor one candidate over another; (b) oppose a candidate in some manner; or (c) have the effect of favoring a candidate or group of candidates, will constitute prohibited participation or intervention.

The Internal Revenue Service provides resources to exempt organizations and the public to help them understand the prohibition. As part of its examination program, the IRS also monitors whether organizations are complying with the prohibition.
Page Last Reviewed or Updated: June 16, 2010

This leads us to understand that there are separate meanings being derived from what is actually said in order to mislead the public, John Q. Churchgoer. First, as is usually quoted verbatim on most websites that are trying to mislead you, it is stated that the I.R.S. has said that political activities are "RESTRICTED", but later, and what I wish to point out, is that these aren't somewhat restricted, as is being told to the public, instead the I.R.S. says that the restriction is that it is "...absolutely prohibited from directly or indirectly participating in, or intervening in, any political campaign on behalf of (or in opposition to) any candidate for elective public office. Contributions to political campaign funds or public statements of position (verbal or written) made on behalf of the organization in favor of or in opposition to any candidate for public office clearly violate the prohibition against political campaign activity. Violating this prohibition may result in denial or revocation of tax-exempt status and the imposition of certain excise taxes."
That doesn't include a whole other provision having to do with endorsing ANY LEGISLATION (which would include Roe Vs. Wade which was passed to keep young girls from dying) which I may add is being discussed openly but no one has actually reported "their church" for openly breaking the law. And the part in the I.R.S. Rules that demands that no religious body which is tax exempt under Section 501(c)(3) states that: (directly from the I.R.S. website, not an edited version) URL,,id=163392,00.html


In general, no organization may qualify for section 501(c)(3) status if a substantial part of its activities is attempting to influence legislation (commonly known as lobbying). A 501(c)(3) organization may engage in some lobbying, but too much lobbying activity risks loss of tax-exempt status.
Legislation includes action by Congress, any state legislature, any local council, or similar governing body, with respect to acts, bills, resolutions, or similar items (such as legislative confirmation of appointive office), or by the public in referendum, ballot initiative, constitutional amendment, or similar procedure. It does not include actions by executive, judicial, or administrative bodies.
An organization will be regarded as attempting to influence legislation if it contacts, or urges the public to contact, members or employees of a legislative body for the purpose of proposing, supporting, or opposing legislation, or if the organization advocates the adoption or rejection of legislation.
Organizations may, however, involve themselves in issues of public policy without the activity being considered as lobbying. For example, organizations may conduct educational meetings, prepare and distribute educational materials, or otherwise consider public policy issues in an educational manner without jeopardizing their tax-exempt status.
Additional information:

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: June 11, 2010

Sunday, July 18, 2010

The Truth About Religion, Partisan Politics, and Tax Exemption

Every Sabbath or holy day for each of millions of Americans each week, no matter what religion, we go to the church of our choice in order to find a more spiritually enlightening view of the world we live in. Instead what we have ended up with is partisan political messages. The right of a church or religious business to interpret for us who we should vote for, what bills we should vote for, or anything else they do on a regular basis is in violation with the law. The United States constitution and several state laws already state that when these religious businesses endorse publicly any form of politics, party, or politician - that they will lose their tax free status that is afforded to them by our government to operate as a church. Every time you hear even the slightest political message, opinion, or rant you are listening to a message designed to sway your opinion, and therefor your vote. Let's look at the record. What countries have decided to let their government get involved in their religion at the exclusion of all other religions?
  1. The church of England tried their hand at it...
  2. Turkey had a religious country that resolved to make their country a better place. From , it says, "... Religion and Secularity 99% of the Turkish population is Moslem. The remaining is composed of Orthodox Christians, Gregorian Christians, Catholic, Suryani and Protestant Christians, and Jews. Although most of the population is Moslem, Turkey is a secular country and everyone has freedom of religion and beliefs. No one can be forced to participate in religious ceremonies or rites against their will and no blame can be attached to anyone because of their beliefs.

    The 600 years Islamic reigned Ottoman empire collapsed in the 1920's and after the independence war led by Mustafa Kemal Ataturk the principle of secularism introduced to the Turkish people.

    Turkey is the only country among the Islamic countries which has included secularism in her Constitution and practices it. With the abolition of the Caliphate and the Ministry of Shariah (Islamic Law) and Foundations, on 3 March 1924 during the Republic period, significant steps were taken on the course to secularism and by providing the unification of education and later the unification of the judiciary. These steps were followed by other steps such as the Hat Reform, closure of the Sects and Convents, changing the weekly holiday from Friday to Sunday and the adoption of the Latin alphabet and the Gregorian calendar. Finally, with an amendment put into practice with Law No. 3115 dated 5 February 1937, "secularism" became a constitutional principle. Although the concept of "secularism" was included in the Constitution of the Republic of Turkey in 1937, the principle of secularism had existed "de facto" since the foundation of the Republic.
  3. Only a few Buddhist countries actually make their religion a base of their government. Tibet is somewhat led by the Dalai Lama but, the reality is, Tibet was overtaken by China. Now, if you want to see how this works, we would have to look at Burma. E.F. Shumacher wrote a book called "Small is Beautiful" in which he included one article from his past writings entitled "Buddhist Economics" that explained how the Burmese made religion and government work together. One must remember that Buddhism is more of a philosophy of how one treats other people and doesn't require that a person believe in any certain prescribed deity.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The U.S. Constitution

I am going to write a blog on the U.S. Constitution, the people who ignore it and the people who uphold it. I seem to have figured something out recently. I am told by Christians that they consider humans sinful and that anything that we enjoy, which would be entertainment, posessions, food, sex, drinking, getting high, art, or anything else people do to please themselves is sinful. There are some who only believe that pertains to the supposed sins that they don't enjoy. I believe a look at history would reveal that sexual indiscretions committed by the clergy caused many of these "rules to live by" to be instituted by the clergy.
Therefor, when it comes to sin, a sin is anything that I don't partake in that is enjoyable. That means anyone who believes that we each are to be able to judge another person is WRONG. I am tired of hearing about how "it is written", because my argument is, "BY WHO??" It was written by you to make me feel or appear less than you and to make you feel or appear to yourself as superior. Go Away! You don't have the right to decide right from wrong for everyone else.
Television shows like "Law and Order" that I find myself enduring at times feed into the ego of people like that. Christopher Meloni who plays "Elliot" and "Mariska Hargitay" who plays "Olivia" are so over the top that the Special Victims Unit part of the show has been ruined by unrealistic portrayals of the police as obsessed moral control freaks with no respect for the constitution. Every episode entails them breaking rules, breaking laws, entrapment, an extreme lack of ethics, and loads of unconstitutional behavior. They act like individual rights are a nuisance to them. Those damn things are to be disregarded for you to do your job properly, right. I believe shows like this are a big part of why the police are hated and disrespected in the communities where people get arrested frequently.
They should be regarded as bad for your child to watch as porno or violence. The constant breaking of the rules of their court according to the law and the constitution are supposed to be something that is the odd occurance instead of the norm and instead, shows like this are given a disclaimer written on the screen in the beginning of the show. Their present disclaimer says, "The characters and scenes depicted in this film are fictional. Any resemblance to any individual, living or dead, is purely coincidental." I would like to see that the disclaimer also includes the words, "Any procedures of the police on this show are also fictional and the idea that the police are supposed to figure out how to ignore or 'get around' the constitution in order to do good police work is also fictional." I think this message is a good thing for the police to understand also. I believe this sends a message to the police that we wish for them to break the law in order to obtain a conviction in any criminal case.
Some of them think it is 'honorable' or 'proud' to break the law or be dishonest in their apprehension, detention, indictment, conviction, and incarceration of any citizen of the United States is wrong. We are human, it is easy to get caught up in the moment and tell ourselves that what we see on Television is a good thing. We might even think that television is the source for our knowledge of right from wrong. This is an "ENTERTAINMENT" media and not to be considered serious or infallibly correct.
In the case of this show, like many others, if we are correctly seeing reality, we realise that we wouldn't want policemen who ignore who is guilty, what the facts really are, the fact that torturing a suspect who only happens to have been in the area where a crime was committed by questioning them without food, sleep, water, a bathroom break, etc. is the way to obtain a confession of whatever they want to hear but NOT how to get an actual confession. The word DURESS should come into play here. If every suspect is to be denied his right to an attourney, his right to one phone call, his right to be confronted by his accuser, and his right to explain his side of things, is fundamentally more than wrong, it is inexcusable and should not be condoned, allowed, or even given merit to for reasons of the fact that if the police didn't do things wrong to do the right thing, we wouldn't have the prisons in the United States making prison industries into a cottage industry. If you go to states where the majority of office furniture, the majority of computer work, the majority of printing, the license plate manufacture, etc. is all done at the prison, then you will see a direct correlation between the need for prisons becoming the driving factor for discrimination and false arrests. They need to fill the prisons up, so they arrest more than average, indict more unfairly and with disregard for the constitution and other laws, and imprison all they can, The minority community is most hard hit by this. If it weren't for greedy politicians putting this first then, there would be no corruption in the prisons on the legal side. They would all treat prisoners fairly and without extreme conditions.
After all, they are sent to prison AS punishment, not FOR punishment. Prison is the punishment. No matter how much one thinks they are coddled by the system, they can't be with their families, they can't earn a decent living, they can't plan for their future, and they can't find a decent job anywhere in the continental United States ever again. They have the right to vote taken away and they have to fight in the court to have some of them restored. They can't vote, they can't own property in some states, and they can never feel vindicated because the majority of Americans doesn't care for them rehabibitating themselves, they just want exoffenders locked up from now on. That not only is NOT realistic, it is fundamentally wrong.