Colby Cosh: acquire church property tax? It's significantly better than burning it

0
98
Colby Cosh: collect church property tax? It's much better than burning it

Links to the breadcrumb trail

The idea probably wouldn't be popular enough, but it would be a better way to get revenge for the injustice in the boarding school than the current wave of arson attacks

Author of the article:

Colby Cosh

Publication date:

July 05, 20211 hour agoRead for 4 minutes 25 comments A firefighter doused the remains of the parish church of St. Jean Baptiste in Morinville, Alta., Which burned to the ground on June 30, 2021.A firefighter doused the remains of the parish church of St. Jean Baptiste in Morinville, Alta., Which burned to the ground on June 30, 2021. Photo by Larry Wong / Postmedia News

Article content

At the end of last month, the mayor of Iqaluit, the capital of Nunavut, had a brilliant idea. Kenny Bell was appalled at the discovery – or rediscovery – of hundreds of unmarked graves in former residential schools in western Canada. He wondered what he could do as a non-indigenous mayor of an indigenous community to "help where I can and stand with indigenous peoples". Oddly, he didn't decide, as some others seem, that arson was the obvious answer to his question.

advertising

This ad hasn't loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

Instead, he announced that he would introduce a motion to the city council to lift the property tax exemption for churches in Iqaluit, as they exist almost everywhere in Canada. Bell was quoted by the Nunatsqiaq News as saying, “We are not taking revenge on (churches); They literally killed thousands of children. "

One cannot help but get the impression that this semicolon hides the desire to actually take revenge on churches. But losing the property tax exemption would hit some churches that have never been powerful enough to coordinate with the Canadian state on a program of racial assimilation – the city has Baptist and Pentecostal missions, as well as a mosque – and Mayor Bell says he does not intend to to discriminate between tax-exempt buildings. The next council meeting will take place on July 13th.

advertising

This ad hasn't loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

The mayor's idea may have been a little impulsive

Now the mayor's idea may have been a little impulsive. CBC News had no problem finding Iqaluit Church volunteers who loathe the idea that churches faced with new tax laws would lose the ability to provide counseling and addiction services. (Maybe the city could pay even more if it weren't for that many tax-exempt buildings?) Bell rejected the CBC, but mentioned that "many Inuit are happy" with the idea behind his proposal; however, another respondent said she had spoken to some elders and her reaction was more or less, "Puppy, the whites are back." Bell admitted in an earlier interview that he hadn't recruited any other council members to get a feel for how the vote might turn out.

With an overview of the reporting, that doesn't sound like the ideal way to achieve a gesture of reconciliation. But neither is it arson. Since Mayor Bell launched his trial balloon, the country has seen an obvious pogrom against Catholic churches, with two Anglican churches in BC. Attend the Canada Day party. Most indigenous speakers have denounced church fire rashes, but it's not difficult to find white progressives to celebrate on social media. If you try to post something like, "Hey, arson is bad guys," you will likely wash some things out in a few seconds.

advertising

This ad hasn't loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

So why do we have a progressive bien-pensant conversation about whether church arson is good and not a progressive bien-pensant conversation about statutory tax exemptions for churches? Is the answer that destructive measures against the crushing dead hand of the church are actively preferable to ordinary politics? Is it the case that the lifting of the exceptions would be an exercise in democracy and thus not fuel the imagination of the pyromaniac cosplay revolutionaries? Is it because changing provincial and municipal statutes requires a lot of legal work that leads to little or nothing, and that it is much easier to commit a disgusting, possibly murderous crime in the middle of the night?

advertising

This ad hasn't loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

  1. Graffiti and damage will be on display at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Calgary on Thursday, July 1, 2021. Several churches in Calgary were destroyed overnight, according to police.

    Raymond J. de Souza: Rash of Catholic church burnings and vandalism is not "sad", but sacrilege

  2. Suspected arson burning of Chopaka Church in the Lower Similkameen Indian Band Reserve in BC, top left, St. John & # 39; s Anglican Church on the Six Nations of the Grand River in Ontario, right, and the Sacred Heart Church in Penticton Indian Reserve in BC

    Chris Selley: When politicians cannot condemn indigenous church burnings, “reconciliation” is a pipe dream

The radical left usually didn't think that far, and the non-radical left in this country is quite ecclesiastical. It is only atheists in themselves, regardless of their political leanings, who have ever made a lot of ado about the various tax exemptions that churches enjoy because of our deep legal tradition. From the militant atheist's point of view, it is easy to see that the old common law status of churches as useful in themselves, regardless of their metaphysical bona fide, is the very same attitude that enabled the creation of state-licensed and ecclesiastical boarding schools themselves. (These schools sometimes put students on lucrative farms – a commercial aspect that has been politely overlooked for the same reasons.)

advertising

This ad hasn't loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

The abolition of the property tax exemption for the churches would actually generate income that could be used explicitly for state programs with a reconciliation character. The idea probably wouldn't be popular enough to be successful anywhere, any more than it would in Iqaluit. But it should be more popular than a wave of arson that the joint efforts of our political class (and the police) have not stopped, and leftist reconciliation enthusiasts might be asked why they don't stand behind Mayor Bell's idea.

Do you still believe that religion in itself is a force for social good? If this is to remain a working principle of our civilization in spite of all these unmarked cemeteries, it would be the time to say so at a moment when sincere Catholic and Anglican believers fearfully wait to see if their church is the closest to the big bonfire added. As an atheist, I believe that churches should be bound by the law, not excluded from it, and arbitrarily destroyed.

National Post

• Twitter: colbycosh

The big problems are still a long way from being resolved. Sign up for the NP comment newsletter, NP platform.

Share this article on your social network

advertising

This ad hasn't loaded yet, but your article continues below.

By clicking the registration button, you agree to receive the above newsletter from Postmedia Network Inc. You can unsubscribe at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of our emails. Postmedia Network Inc. | 365 Bloor Street East, Toronto, Ontario, M4W 3L4 | 416-383-2300

Remarks

Postmedia advocates a lively but civil discussion forum and encourages all readers to share their thoughts on our articles. It can take up to an hour for comments to be moderated before they appear on the site. We ask that you keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have turned on email notifications. You will now receive an email when you've received a reply to your comment, there's an update on a comment thread you're following, or when a user follows a comment. Check out our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to customize your email settings.