- The Washington Times - Saturday, April 28, 2001

Regarding your April 15 front-page special report, “Keeping the faith,” I applaud the actions taken by Philadelphia Mayor John Street. There is plenty of evidence that faith-based charities are greatly impacting society. Why do some government officials believe that religious interaction is unconstitutional? The answer is simple: Because it threatens bureaucracy within federal and state governments.

While faith-based charities are successfully attending to society´s social ills, bureaucratic agencies are failing to do so. For the past 30 years, government-run agencies have failed to reduce problems in poverty-stricken areas. Each year, the federal government spends billions of dollars to fund the “war on poverty.” Although many agencies have been instituted to provide relief to the lower classes, conditions have worsened. Illiteracy continues to plague inner-city schools. City teen-agers take up crime as a hobby. Day after day, children lose hope in the American dream; their lives are doomed to a perpetual state of poverty.

Hope and inspiration can be provided by faith-based charities. Children who participate in such programs are given direction and a chance in life. Although children cannot be pulled out of their environment, they can see that people actually care for them.

Do government bureaucrats care about the 13-year-old who cannot read?


JON PARSLOW

Bel Air, Md.


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