In God We Trust?: Faith-Based Organizations and the Quest to Solve America's Social Ills

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This pioneering book charts how President George W. Bush's "compassionate conservatism" creates a new path for American Social Policy. There is a growing interest in testing the proposition that faith-based organizations (FB's) could do even greater good, especially if government supports an expanded role. The organizations represent a potentially valuable, but controversial, resource because they offer to fight a very different war against America's social ills. This work offers three conclusions. First, FB's are effective in dealing with chronic social problems because they spark personal transformation. Second, financing them through the Tax Code or vouchers is preferable to direct federal funding. The fear that public funding means government take-over of religion serves as perhaps the greatest impediment to a more expansive role for FB's. Third, although predicting the U.S. Supreme Court's resolution of church-state issues is fraught with difficulties, the emerging "equal treatment" of religion by the High Court suggests a more permissive attitude toward the federal funding of religous charities. The tax and voucher alternatives seem certain to pass constitutional muster. In God We Trust? is among the first works to assess President Bush's policy efforts to meet America's social ills by turning more tasks over to FB's. In addition to demonstrating the constitutionality of the federal efforts to fund FB's, the book analytically summarizes the existing empirical evidence dealing with the effectiveness of faith-based organizations.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Lewis D. Solomon is the Theodore Rinehart Professor of Business Law at the George Washington University Law School.

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Table of Contents

Chapter 1 George W. Bush's Road to a New Deal for Faith Chapter 2 The Transformation of America's Social Safety Net Chapter 3 Armies of Compassion: What Are Faith-Based Organizations and What Do They Do? Chapter 4 Are Faith-Based Organizations Effective? Chapter 5 Charitable Choice: Its Genesis, Expansion, and Implementation prior to the Bush Presidency Chapter 6 Implementation of President George W. Bush's New Deal for Faith Chapter 7 The Funding of Faith-Based Organizations: The Constitutional Dimension Chapter 8 Meeting the Challenge of America's Social Pathologies: The Long and Difficult Road Ahead

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