In February, the Biden administration celebrated the “first anniversary of the reestablishment of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.” Most Americans probably don’t even know such an office exists. George W. Bush had created it to give faith-based charities access to federal grants. But that’s clearly not Biden’s motivation for maintaining the office. In the case of Christian adoption and foster care agencies, Biden has blocked, not facilitated, access to federal money, which has resulted in a lawsuit against his administration.
For Biden, the office exists not to protect faith-based charities but to enlist them in his left-wing politics. The office’s supposed first-year accomplishments, according to his administration, include: pushing his vaccine mandates, fighting “systematic racism,” “strengthening pluralism,” supporting porous immigration policies, and advancing his climate change activism.
The office should be renamed the White House Office of Politicizing Faith-Based Charities. Its current work has nothing to do with religion per se. Biden’s use of the office would have brought a smile to the face of Saul Alinsky, the notorious community organizer who popularized the politicization of religion. An agnostic, Alinsky urged his disciples to exploit churches in their work, as they provide a “passport of morality,” reams of money, and organizational resources. In an interview with Playboy, Alinsky bragged about his easy manipulation of the Catholic Church in Chicago.
On all things COVID, the Biden administration has been openly Alinskyite, using churches to promote its decrees while denying religious exemptions to their members, a matter on which the administration continues to lose in court. Melissa Rogers, who heads up the White House Office of Faith-Based Charities and Neighborhood Partnerships, has written about the value of using churches as vaccine clinics: “Some Americans are far more comfortable getting their shot in a house of worship than in a doctor’s office. Seeing congregational leaders get vaccinated first can further relieve anxiety and be a powerful refutation of baseless conspiracy theories.” (READ MORE: Biden Coerces Christians)
In addition to roping the religious into the administration’s agenda, Rogers has been meeting with atheists. This is evidently part of the office’s new “religious equity” mandate. According to the White House “fact sheet” on its accomplishments, the office is “promoting religious equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility.” This is the Biden administration’s way of saying that previous presidents spent too much time focused on Christians, and that it is going to direct its energies to non-Christians.
Notice that the Biden administration, while dismissing the religious freedom claims of Christians, takes threats to Islamic religious expression very seriously. Rashad Hussain, the U.S. ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, tweeted out in February: “Religious freedom includes the ability to choose one’s religious attire. The Indian state of Karnataka should not determine permissibility of religious clothing. Hijab bans in schools violate religious freedom and stigmatize and marginalize women and girls.”
This is coming from the same administration that supports the participation of biological males in female sports and considers the objections of the Little Sisters of the Poor to Obama’s contraceptive mandate a “war on women.”
In Biden’s State of the Union address last week, he reiterated his support for the “Equality Act,” which would force religious hospitals to perform transgender surgeries. It is hard to imagine a more egregious violation of religious freedom than that one. Yet Biden’s office of faith-based charities can claim that Americans are free to live their “faith without fear.” Its aforementioned fact sheet speaks about “antisemitic, xenophobic, and bigoted attacks against people of faith — targeting synagogues, predominantly Black churches, and Muslim and Sikh communities, among other communities” — while saying nothing about anti-Christian bigotry.
The reason for that omission is simple: the Biden administration is practicing that bigotry. It automatically considers the historic teachings of Christianity on morality “discriminatory.” The only form of Christianity it will accept in the public square is a politicized one that aligns with temporal liberal goals. But that is just a Christianity without Christ, a subversion of religion that produces pols like Biden, who could tout abortion in his address last Tuesday, then turn up the next morning with ash on his forehead.
We often hear liberals say that they want church and state separate. But they don’t. They want the two conjoined, with religion reduced to a servant of the state. Their goal is to take religion out of religion and put politics into it. From time to time, they may fake an enthusiasm about the “unique” contribution of religion to public life, but in practice, they impede it and only permit its connection to government if it does government’s bidding.
It is for this reason that Biden’s “faith-based” office has no faith. Some have called the office pointless. But it is worse than pointless. It is an insidious corruption of religion.
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