A new study reveals that the Bush administration is succeeding beyond the most optimistic projections of supporters -- and the most pessimistic fears of critics -- in funneling government social service dollars to religious groups, despite the refusal of Congress to pass most of its faith-based initiative.
Last week the Roundtable on Religion and Social Welfare Policy issued an exhaustive report indicated that religious groups "are now involved in government-encouraged activities ranging from building strip malls for economic improvement to promoting child car seats."
For much of his life, Lawrence Mudgett didn't need Judaism. He had football. But when the 6-foot-6, 250-pound sophomore was declared ineligible for the NCAA at the beginning of the school year, he began searching for another niche.
As a participant on Birthright Israel's 2002-2003 winter programs, Mudgett found what he was looking for.
"Going to Israel changed me. It's opened up so many doors," said the UCSB sophomore. "Just being part of the Jewish community and being involved in Hillel helps fill the void of not being on a team and not having that camaraderie."