Should US churches lose their tax-exempt status? | The Tylt

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Should US churches lose their tax-exempt status?
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Famous atheist comedian Bill Maher makes a fiery argument here for why churches should pay taxes.

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Recent scandals, like the Catholic Church's sexual abuse cover-up, have left many asking how churches got tax-exempt status in the first place.

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People who want churches to stay tax-exempt argue religious organizations do great charitable work, and should be treated like nonprofits.

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But unlike soup kitchens and homeless shelters, churches do own assets. The Catholic Church is one of the world's top 15 landowners.

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Joe Carter of the Acton Institute argues that 

Churches and other religious institutions in American are almost always exempt from federal, state, and local taxes. The justification for this policy is usually that such institutions provide vital charitable benefits to society. While that is undoubtably true the benefits argument is not the strongest reason to support tax exemption. A better reason is that we need to maintain a distinction between the state and the church.
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