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Social Principles: A Framework for Faith and Justice
As followers of a faith that calls us to “do justice, love kindness, and walk humbly with our God,” Texas Impact is committed to working in the legislative process for policies that enhance freedom, justice and economic opportunity for all people. We believe that scriptural justice is in large measure economic justice. God’s call to “do justice and love kindness” requires that we establish systems to care for God’s children and all of creation, and that we allocate adequate resources to support those systems.
Texas Impact recognizes health care as a basic human need. We assert universal access to quality, affordable health care for Texans as a core responsibility for the state. Likewise, we assert the state’s obligation to ensure that all Texas children have the basic goods and services they need to secure their wellbeing.
Texas Impact affirms the state’s obligation to provide equitable and adequate public education as not only a legal obligation but also a moral and practical one. We oppose any attempt to limit the state’s responsibility to fund public education, or to fund the teaching of privately held beliefs with public funds.
Texas Impact expresses its deep commitment to preserving and restoring God’s good creation. We believe that existing degradation of Texas’ air, land, and water represent our failure to live up to the call to care for creation and to care for each other.
Public Safety and Criminal Justice
Acknowledging the imperfection of human justice, Texas Impact reaffirms its long-standing opposition to the death penalty. We affirm that all people should receive just and fair treatment in the criminal justice system. We believe true criminal justice lies in healing the community by bringing balance to individual lives and restoring relationships.
Meeting human needs and preserving natural resources require an adequate state revenue system. Texas Impact believes the revenue system must also be fair. Our present, antiquated system is increasingly unfair and inadequate. It disproportionately burdens those who have the fewest resources, and it disproportionately taxes certain kinds of economic activities. It is inadequate to fund the entities and programs the state establishes to protect and nurture its citizens and natural resources. The system also fails to meet the common criteria for a dependable revenue system, because it is rigid rather than flexible and selective rather than broad-based.
Government and Power
Too often, public policies that fail to promote justice flourish because special interests enjoy disproportionate access to those in power. Texas Impact attests to the enduring Scriptural call for just access to power. Texas Impact deplores the way private money distorts the democratic process and serves to concentrate power in the hands of a few.
For more information on commonly held religious social teachings visit http://texasinterfaithcenter.org/content/faith-and-public-policy