Friday, October 31, 2003

Your Tax Dollars at Work


To get a job at the Orange County Rescue Mission near Los Angeles, you must sign a statement declaring, ``I have received the Lord Jesus Christ as my personal Savior'' and that you believe those who haven't will suffer ``eternal separation from God,'' according to the form provided by the mission.

The mission's aim is to ``reconstruct'' each homeless man and woman it shelters into a ``productive Christian member of society.'' To treat addicts, the mission uses ``the actual words of Jesus,'' according to the mission's Web site.

Bush and other administration officials have repeatedly said they find it just plain wrong that under the old rules the Orange County Rescue Mission was denied federal Housing and Urban Development funds because it refused to secularize.

``Government action like this is pure discrimination,'' Bush said in a speech this week in Dallas, again singling out the Orange County mission.

Ah, but things are changing.

Mission Accomplished

``After the regulations are finalized, groups like Orange County Rescue Mission will be able to apply for HUD funds while maintaining their religious identity,'' says a statement posted on the White House Web site.