1. Can of worms, Dave? I’m one of those clergy who gets a housing allowance, BUT I still pay a good deal in taxes as I have to do quarterly payments, being treated as self-employed, and pay into Social Security myself. Also, I have had to find my own health insurance (I’m sure Rev. Warren doen’t have to). And not having a large congregation means I take home very little (by comparison to other pastors in America).

    So, I don’t share all the same exact concerns as this blogger, but I share some of the basic ones about propagating the notion that poorer people don’t pay taxes! I wouldn’t mind getting Rev. Warren’s salary!

  2. Having worked all my life amongst “poor people” in a serving capacity I can honestly say that many in this category have no intention of being other than recipients of other people’s money. They have fallen into a victim mentality which paralyses them and fills me with compassion. Many will consider that other people’s money or goods are theirs by “right”. Nowhere in the Bible is this taught. It is interesting that after every revival in Christian history, converts improved their living conditions becuase of the Bible’s insistence on hard work, discipline and the compassion of felllow believers. At the same time, those whose hard work and risk taking have resulted in wealth do have a Biblically mandated command to help those less fortunate. How this is to be done is the major question. As far as taxes go, it is odd that people who have never paid federal taxes receive payments

  3. My guess is that RW would have been justified in his comments if he had said 1/2 don’t pay income tax. Second, I am not as assured that “every one knows” what Slaktivist asserts, so question his conclusion that RW is lying. Thrid, what was RW thinking?

  4. Yes, Jerry, I think if he’d said “income tax” it would be much less problematic, but still the force of his statement is still troubling–why would you argue that the poor have it too easy?
    Yes, Grainne, incentives to continue working are a huge problem, and an issue in Scripture, but far more frequently Scripture pushes me to give generously.
    Yes, Dennis, a can of worms, but a good one to discuss.

  5. I’m very glad to see this article getting some exposure in venues less likely to be uniformly to the left. I say that knowing I probably lean more left than right, myself (depending on the issue), but feeling that Slacktivist’s interpretation of this issue lacks a necessary charity. I find it impossible to agree with the idea that Warren purposely lied in his statement about taxes (income or otherwise). Yes, Warren’s using an easily falsifiable assertion, and I feel that even if he were right, I can’t imagine why he’s doing so except to stir up resentment against those who (for whatever) reason, don’t may income taxes, which is an unfair basis if I’m right.

    But to call him a liar so boldly? That goes way too far, and squashes some of the viable dialogue on this issue that we should be having.

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