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View from the Hill Blog: Death and Taxes

By Grace Boatright, View from the Hill National Grange Legislative Blog (4/15/11)

  APRIL 18, 2011 --

The only two things you can count on …Death and Taxes.

April 15th for many people is a day of infamy, albeit annual infamy. Tax Day.  This year, due to a rare holiday celebrated in the District of Columbia, the Internal Revenue Service deadline for filing your tax return is actually April 18th.  For those last-minute procrastinators, they can thank Abraham Lincoln who freed over 3000 slaves that emancipated to D.C. from slave states, when he signed the Compensated Emancipation Act in 1862.  I find it a bit ironic that the celebration and observance of such an incredibly liberating act conducted by Abraham Lincoln in 1862 is now associated so closely with the grim and humbling task of paying one’s taxes.

Truthfully, this was the first year that I have filed a tax return. I graduated from college only a year ago, and thanks to the National Grange, I actually have an income on which to pay taxes. In light of the nearly 9% unemployment rate, I should feel blessed to pay taxes on my income…right? Somehow, that wasn’t the feeling I got when I clicked the “Submit” button on TurboTax last Saturday. Instead of employment bliss, I wondered why I should pay any amount of my income to a government who obviously can’t be trusted to spend it wisely.

Our nation was already over $14 trillion in debt and then it took months for Congress to agree on how to fund the government through just the rest of this year. In the process, the government nearly shut down, we somehow became involved in the Libyan revolution- helping a group of rebels who openly hate America, the price of gasoline rose over 5%, the price of food increased more in February alone than it has in 36 years, and of course during this whole crisis, the President found it an appropriate time to vacation in South America. With all of this going on, it doesn’t make me want to give the government more money, and it certainly doesn’t make me feel emancipated.

Grace Boatright
National Grange Program Assistant

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