Religious exemptions

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For how much longer can an egalitarian society like Australia continue to tolerate the injustice of religious exemptions from our laws?

Whilst claiming the moral high ground, religious leaders refuse to accept the basic premise of equality before the law.

They currently enjoy exemptions from federal taxes, state taxes, local council rates, anti discrimination laws and animal cruelty laws among others.

We have laws to ensure the humane slaughter of animals, but to prepare Kosher and Halal meat for Jews and Muslims they are allowed to cut an animals throat while it is still conscious. Apparently God prefers it that way.

For decades now, gay and lesbian citizens have fought for the right to be treated equally in the eyes of the law, yet those religions that have traditionally discriminated against such people by calling them an abomination are still free to practice their bigotry and prejudice in the name of “freedom of religion”.

Would it be too presumptuous to suggest that until religions start abiding by the same rules as the rest of us that they stop pontificating on the virtues of using ancient texts as an ethical guide in today’s more enlightened times?

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