1. Welcome to Religious Forums, a friendly forum to discuss all religions in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Our modern chat room. No add-ons or extensions required, just login and start chatting!
    • Access to private conversations with other members.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Why Mormons hate gov't welfare

Discussion in 'North American Politics' started by jonny, Aug 2, 2007.

  1. jonny

    jonny New Member

    Messages:
    6,260
    Do Mormons oppose government welfare because they know that they'll never need it?

    I don't think it's a secret that most Mormons are conservative Republicans. Part of the reason is that members of the church are taught self-reliance and responsibility; therefore, we don't expect to have to rely on the government for assistance. This is an idea that is embraced by the Republican party (in theory), so it makes sense that Mormons would be Republicans.

    Anyway, I was walking through Wal-mart and got to thinking - is the real reason that Mormons are so opposed to gov't welfare because we already have a built-in welfare system with the church and don't need the government to bail us out?

    If you need food, money, clothing, etc - the church has got your back because of the Fast Offering program. With this program, members of a congregation skip two meals once a month and donate a "generous fast offering" (the cost of the two meals + whatever else you can afford to give) to the church. This money stays in the ward and is used to help the members in the local area. Extra money is sent to the church and then redistributed to wards as needed.

    The fast offering money can be used for just about anything. When I was the Ward Clerk I wrote checks for doctor bills, utility bills, rent payments, etc. People can get vouchers for food and clothing. The family works with the local Bishop and Relief Society President to make sure that their needs are being met.

    Here is what the church welfare program includes:
    • 80 church welfare farms, raches, and dairies (including the largest Beef Ranch in the world)
    • 80 cannery facilities
    • 137 bishop storehouses (where people can pick up free food and basic household item)
    • 100 home storage centers
    • 44 Deseret Industries Thrift Stores (kind of like a Goodwill)
    • 285 Employment Centers
    • 69 LDS Social Services offices
    Here is the website for the LDS welfare program: http://www.providentliving.org/

    One principle of the LDS welfare program is that there are really no "free handouts." Those recieving the welfare volunteer at the canneries, on the farms, at the church, etc. This allows people to earn the assistance they are receiving in a way. I believe they are also expected to pay tithing to the church (10% of their income - if they have income).


    I know that a system like this would never work through the federal government, so that's not what I'm suggesting. I'm just wondering if this system contributes to Mormons leaning to the right. It isn't that we are opposed to the socialistic principles that the government wants to impose; rather, we have no need for this because we are already doing it on our own. In some ways, we're paying double - once for the church welfare program and once for the government welfare program.
     
  2. Autodidact

    Autodidact Intentionally Blank

    Messages:
    23,259
    Right, and since non-Mormons don't matter, it all works out.

    One thought that occurs to me are the fundamentalist polygamous Mormons in Northern Arizona whose multiple wives and children live off TANF because they officially have no husband. They would be an exception, I suppose.
     
  3. lillitruthseeker

    lillitruthseeker New Member

    Messages:
    216
    This makes no sense to me at all -- because the welfare comes from the church it isnt considered welfare? if the church didnt have that kind of set-up they would be in the food stamp office or a soup kitchen like everyone else in unfortunate circumstances -- pretty hypocritical from my point of view

    How is this hating government welfare?? A handout is a handout -- plain and simple
     
  4. Zeno

    Zeno New Member

    Messages:
    238
    In my opinion it's because anyone who lies on the extreme (ie. like you said a conservative Republican or a liberal Democrat) will tend to base their beliefs on party lines instead of individual issues.

    For example, I know that I am a very conservative Republican, therefore I think welfare steals income from moral, hard-working Americans. This person ignores the many moral, hardworking people that welfare helps.

    OR

    For example, I know that I am a very liberal Democrat, therefore I think we need welfare to live in a humane society. This person ignores the examples of welfare being abused - ie. drug dealers, criminals, tax evaders, etc.
     
  5. Bishka

    Bishka New Member

    Messages:
    18,945
    Did anybody actually read what jonny posted?
     
  6. Zeno

    Zeno New Member

    Messages:
    238
    I was answering the question posed in the thread title.
     
  7. Storm

    Storm ThrUU the Looking Glass

    Messages:
    44,609
    Religion:
    UU/ panentheist/ neopagan/ process theology
    Yeah, I did, and I got something very different out of it. He's saying that maybe you don't believe in government welfare because you have a Church that takes on that obligation.

    Which is great for you, but leaves non-Mormons high and dry. How is that fair?
     
  8. Gentoo

    Gentoo The Feisty Penguin

    Messages:
    10,043
    Okay, so you don't like government welfare, as conservatives you want as small a government as can be, makes sense to me. You can also take care of your own, great! Does this extend to people of your community that are not LDS? If not, why do the LDS in your community get this kind of help whereas the others have no where else to turn but to the government?
     
  9. Bishka

    Bishka New Member

    Messages:
    18,945
    Absolutely.

    We ask if they come in for welfare and get it, if they would in turn help in the welfare stores and things. We will help anyone that will come (as to my knowledge). This is how I think government welfare should be. If you are going to get something, why not work for it to help others who need it as well?
     
  10. MaddLlama

    MaddLlama Obstructor of justice

    Messages:
    8,334
    Personally I don't care for the welfare system and think that people should get a hand-up rather than a hand out. I think the system the LDS church has worked out is a great one, because it is more directly a give-and-take system.

    But, don't you think it's a little unfair to say that Mormons don't like government welfare because they don't want to pay to help people not in the church? Just because the system isn't perfect doesn't mean that people who need some help shouldn't get it.

    To me, it seems a bit selfish and implies that you're basically saying that you're only interested in helping fellow Mormons.

    Like I said, I'm not a big fan of the welfare system either, but I think the idea you're presenting is a bit unfair (unless of course I've misread your post).
     
  11. Bishka

    Bishka New Member

    Messages:
    18,945
    We help people non-LDS and LDS, all they need to do is ask.

    I believe government welfare should be much like the LDS Church, we help anyone who asks, but they need to work for it instead of just being given a free-handout. Does that help at all?
     
  12. MaddLlama

    MaddLlama Obstructor of justice

    Messages:
    8,334
    Yes.

    But, not everybody has a Mormon church in thier community, or even knows that they offer welfare-type services. Whether the system works just like your church or not, it should be available to everyone.

    I don't think johnny said so in his OP, but most Republicans are for abolishing the welfare program altogether, rather than reforming it into a give and take system. I think the LDS perspective is much better, and much more helpful.
     
  13. Bishka

    Bishka New Member

    Messages:
    18,945
    The LDS Church is all over the USA, it may not be in the immediate community, but it is there.
     
  14. MaddLlama

    MaddLlama Obstructor of justice

    Messages:
    8,334
    But, my point is that because not everybody knows it's available, and people may not be able to get help from outside their immediate community, LDS-run welfare isn't a replacement for government welfare.
     
  15. Storm

    Storm ThrUU the Looking Glass

    Messages:
    44,609
    Religion:
    UU/ panentheist/ neopagan/ process theology
    See, I never knew that. It's great, but it raises another question for me: do you proselytize to non-Mormons who come to you?

    I ask because there's a church-based soup kitchen here that does that, and I think it's repugnant.

    What about the working poor, who can't afford the time to come in and volunteer?
     
  16. Bishka

    Bishka New Member

    Messages:
    18,945
    Not that I know of, but I have not been involved with ti too heavily.

    Not sure on that. You'd have to ask jonny or Kathryn. They both have a better knowledge on it then I do.
     
  17. Storm

    Storm ThrUU the Looking Glass

    Messages:
    44,609
    Religion:
    UU/ panentheist/ neopagan/ process theology
    Fair enough.

    I should clarify, though, that what I find repugnant is the practice of making the "charity" contingent on coming to services and the like. If you want to stick an informational pamphlet in a food box, that's one thing. Making addicts sign statements of faith to stay in rehab is another.
    Jonny, Kathryn, consider yourselves asked. :)
     
  18. nutshell

    nutshell New Member

    Messages:
    7,140
    The Mormon Church Humanitarian Department delivers, literally, tons of food, water, clothing, and other essentials to non-Mormons around the world without ever asking for anything in return (including coming to a church service).

    In fact, the Mormon Church is often called upon to help other charities. For example, the Mormon church recently used scientists at BYU to make the food the RCC delivers to Africa more nutritious.

    I think this is the official website: http://www.lds.org/ldsfoundation/welfare/0,7133,1325-1-9--cWELFAREPOSTER,00.html
     
  19. nutshell

    nutshell New Member

    Messages:
    7,140
    Jonny, I'm not sure where you got that idea. I know plenty of LDS families receiving government aid.
     
  20. lillitruthseeker

    lillitruthseeker New Member

    Messages:
    216
    Habitat for Humanity requires people to help build their home and others with community service to even get a house -- thats a government program that is not a free hand out -- how is that any different? Just because a LDS thing will give people some free food if they volunteer doesnt mean people that get government welfare are getting it for nothing -- thats ridiculous

    -- any Church no matter the denomination would help a member of their congregation of tragedy struck -- this is not something that LDS people invented

    -- there are agencies in place to help people with power bills and food that are government based and not a free hand out -- to assume that the government welfare system is to be hated is silly -- yes as a country we need alot of reform but for real people in real need I have no problem with that

    -- volunteering so you dont have to swallow your pride and walk into a welfare office is just a cover up for the real truth maybe it will make you feel better as a person but it still means you cant take care of your own any better than a welfare recipient
     
Verification:
Draft saved Draft deleted