The Obama Administration, despite the promises Barack Obama made during the 2008 presidential campaign, has expanded the federal government’s funding of religious programs (“faith-based initiatives” in politically correct government lingo) without instituting any reforms of the programs’ often discriminatory use of government resources. The justification for this unconstitutional mixture of church and state is that religious groups are supposed to be uniquely able to deliver community services.
That justification is belied by the content of programs developed by the Department of Health and Human Services in response to h1n1, the swine flu. Under the orders of the White House office of government religious programs, the Secretary of Health And Human Services set up a separate office for a new governmental organization called the Health and Human Services Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
The premise of this government center for religious programs is that it would be specially able to work with religious groups in order to deal with health emergencies, like some said H1N1 flu would be. However, if you examine the Center’s publication, H1N1 Flu: A Guide for Community & Faith-based Organizations, you won’t find any special “faith-based” instructions or activities. There’s nothing in the guide for religious organizations to do in dealing with the flu that secular organizations wouldn’t do as well. There’s not a single thing identified in the guide that a religious organization can do just because it’s a religious organization – no way of dealing with the flu that sets religious groups apart.
There’s no need for this special Health and Human Services guide for religious groups. It’s a waste. A general publication for all community organizations, public and private, secular and religious alike, would have been just as effective, and more efficient, as a way of communicating with communities about how to deal with the flu.
What’s next? An official government guide, How Christians Can Cope With The Common Cold? A Buddhist Guide To Bunions? A Muslim Guide To Medicating Measles? A Hindu Task Force For Handling Herpes?