Unconstitutional Experiment Threatens Religion and Democracy

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Washington, April 28 – On this Sunday’s “State of Belief,” The Interfaith Alliance Foundation’s show on Air America Radio, Rev. Welton Gaddy continues to discuss the President’s Faith-Based Initiative and its negative impact on religion and politics in America.  He’s also joined by NPR correspondent and Priestess of Wicca Margot Adler to discuss paganism in America today.


In a news conference this week, The Interfaith Alliance and several national religious leaders called on President Bush to dismantle the Faith-Based Initiative. The leaders fear the Office has been used as a political football to gain favor with certain groups. The Rev. Timothy McDonald, Pastor of First Iconium Baptist Church in Atlanta and Chair of African American Ministers in Action joins Welton to warn people of the initiative’s real effects.


“It is hard to bark when there’s a bone in your mouth,” McDonald says. “This Administration has used the faith-based initiative to buy the black church.”


Welton stresses the initiative was a bad idea when it was conceived in 1999 and is even worse now.


“Put plainly,” Gaddy says, “it’s an ill-conceived, unconstitutional experiment that creates government sponsored religion and threatens the integrity of democracy and the sanctity of religion.”


Continuing State of Belief’s commitment to interfaith dialogue, Welton interviews Margot Adler, a Wiccan, about the current state of religious tolerance in this nation.


“We’re going through a really bad patch,” Adler says. “I think that people’s hearts aren’t very open. I think what people are learning very often in their churches, in their synagogues and in their various houses of worship, are not an appreciation for diversity and I think it’s going to be a very long struggle.”