In other news, I saw this news story and was intrigued. You can find the original article here.
Atheist objects to $1 million for burned-out church
Associated Press - March 11, 2008 12:54 PM ET
CHICAGO (AP) - Atheist activist Rob Sherman says it's unconstitutional for Governor Rod Blagojevich to give $1 million to a burned-out church.
Blagojevich has said Pilgrim Baptist Church would use the money for
administrative offices and educational purposes so not to violate the separation
of church and state.
But Sherman says it would. He appeared at a morning
meeting of the Illinois Capital Development Board even though the governor's
proposal wasn't on the agenda.
Sherman says the governor can give away money
but only for secular services.
Blagojevich pledged the money because the
initial $1 million he promised after a 2006 fire at the church mistakenly went
to an unaffiliated school.
There's another article on the matter here. In this article, the following is said...
In 2006, Blagojevich pledged to give a historic Chicago church $1 million to
help rebuild after it was gutted by fire.The first problem: The church never got
the money. Instead, the money went to an unaffiliated private preschool that was
leasing space from the church.On Tuesday, Blagojevich declared the money went to
“the wrong place” and now promises to give the church the grand total of $2
million to help rebuild.Of course, the governor did not admit the mistake was
his fault.“I’m as frustrated as you are. I’m angry about those who work for me
who allowed this to happen,” Blagojevich said in the Chicago Sun-Times.
How does that much money go to "the wrong place"? If it were $100, then maybe you could see a clerical error in which the money is mistakenly put into an account and goes unnoticed. But, a million dollars? How do you not see that on your balance sheet and think, "Um...this isn't right!"? And, why the hell is an elected, public official giving THAT much money to rebuilding a church? This wasn't his own private monies that he's being so generous with - it's tax payer money. Furthermore,...let me see if I get this straight: you lose a million dollars (which goes to a private, Christian preschool), but then you pledge another TWO million to the Church because your office, allegedly screwed up? That's $3Million in public monies. That makes no sense what-so-ever.