Bush Official Suggests that Pagans and Other "Fringe" Groups Won't Benefit from Faith Based Initiative

December 8, 2003

Source: The Washington Post


On December 8, 2003 The Washington Post reported that "H. James Towey, director of the White House's Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, has stirred up a pot of trouble by suggesting that pagans don't care about the poor. Wiccans, Druids and other pagans across the country, along with the Washington-based advocacy group Americans United for Separation of Church and State, are demanding an apology from Towey for his remarks in a White House-sponsored online chat Nov. 26. According to the official transcript, Towey was asked by someone in Centralia, Mo., whether pagan groups "should be given the same considerations as any other group" that applies for government funds. 'I haven't run into a pagan faith-based group yet, much less a pagan group that cares for the poor!' Towey wrote... Outraged pagans have since bombarded the White House and Internet chat rooms with scores of examples of their charitable activity."