The late Christopher Hitchens <a href=”http://www.patheos.com/blogs/unreasonablefaith/2011/12/the-20-best-christopher-
s-quotes/”>condemned religious leaders for the antiquated practice of “faith healing. ” These people are hostile to medicine because it undermines their position of power and naturally they deny the effectiveness of vaccines. The fact anyone would dispute the medically PROVEN practice of administering vaccines in 2013 is preposterous and unfathomable. Yet, the Lone Star State has once again found a way to shirk logical thought and scientific progress thankseeeeff to this North Texas mega church. Kenneth Copeland Ministries in Newark Texas is the culprit of a Measles outbreak in Tarrant County. Officials in neighboring Oklahoma were on high alert for cases of this rarely seen disease since the mid 1970’s. The Christian homeschool movement has been a primary supporter of boycotting essential vaccines
As of today, there have been twenty confirmed cases of a disease which has been largely eradicated in the United States. In order to combat the outbreak, church officials have promised to thoroughly disinfect the church using a professional cleaning company. They have offered a vaccination opportunity, but unfortunately two months after the fact. Sadly, the church has been the most vocal proponent of the discredited theory that the measles, mumps and rubella vaccine causes autism, but, between his (Copeland’s) advocacy of faith healing and his promotion of the vaccine-autism link on his online talk show, he’s not exactly urging his flock to get their recommended shots.
Looking into this ministry a bit further, I learned it was anything but a humble house of worship. Kenneth Copeland Ministries (KCM) is an EMPIRE whose wealth is generated by tax-free donations diverted to finance a multitude of for-profit industries.
The assets, as reported by a CBS News investigation include: An 18,000 square foot lake-front home in Texas worth $6 million, a fleet of planes and a $20 million jet with a private runway strip just to name a few. The industries this Mega-Church controls are stunningly profitable as well. They include mining, oil drilling, real estate, ranching, livestock and an aviation company that includes Copeland Airport.
The aviation branch allows the family of preachers to spread their mistrust of science and bigotry worldwide. This also enables these vaccination opponents to bring back diseases from foreign lands and spread them among the faithful, who actually believe god can heal with just the right amount of financial contribution to the coffers of these charlatans.
Twenty cases is precisely twenty cases too many in this age of science and progress. When a Republican Senator like Chuck Grassley finds the tax-free machinations of this religiously-based empire unsavory, it should set a precedent for the eventual demise of any religious organization who dares to steal and dupe their members. The sheer number of investigations stemming from the misuse of donations should raise more red flags. The American public seems far too willing to grant tax exempt status to these church-empires without following the money.
The depths of depravity of most, if not all of these mega churches should be exposed more often than the Right Wing can conjure up their brand of IRS scandals. Simply overlooking this willful malevolence could easily create a pandemic in a nation that should leave this Stone Age thinking back where it belongs. Shunning science (vaccines) affects everyone, especially those of us who want no part of their brand of stupid. We have too many modern day problems to revitalize diseases of the past. The least KCM could do is pay their damned taxes and stay the hell away from practicing medicine.