Death, taxes, and hating on the poor.

Posted: 17 October 2005 in civil rights, human rights, media, republicans, stan huskey

Stan Huskey proposes raising the taxes on bread and milk and cutting property taxes altogether.

Mr. Huskey,

First off, I’d like to thank you for not crediting me, taking me out of context, and putting words into my mouth a few months back when you used a quote from me in your column last August.

Second, I’d like to respond to your poverty-blind tax “plan” that involves adding a sales tax to food in order to reduce taxes on properties. As a homeowner, I feel qualified to have an opinion on this, as your plan seems to benefit me.

However, I know that it really doesn’t. Let’s just say, for instance, that your plan saves me $3,000 a year in taxes, but costs me $1,800. You see that as a black-and-white $1,200 surplus. I see it completely different. You see, I have no problem paying taxes, where as you on the right seem to think that taxes are some sort of demon to be exorcized. Even Oliver Wendell Holmes, appointed to the Supreme Court by one of the greatest Republican presidents of all time, said “Taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society.”

So, let’s say I’ve pocketed my $1,200. Meanwhile, just two blocks away from me, a woman who rents her apartment where she raises her two kids (that I no longer pay taxes to provide an education for) is suddenly feeling the increase in milk prices. She’s feeling the increase in bread prices. She’s feeling the increase in clothing prices. You may not know, Mr. Huskey, what it’s like going to school wearing clothes that are running threadbare, or wearing shoes that have a hole in the soles. I do. Your tax plan takes the “burden” from me, owner of a home, and places it on the shoulders of those who can least afford it, people we now call affectionately “the working poor”.

The poor are an anchor on all of us. The more people living in poverty, the more we all pay to support them, and not in taxes. Poverty breeds crime, breeds disease, and breeds strife. When we lift the people out of poverty, we all benefit, rich, middle class, and poor alike.

Now, you probably don’t care about a single mother (mine is widowed), but you don’t see the connection. Since she now can’t really afford the co-pays for checkups, her kids don’t get the health care that they need, regardless of the fact that she has insurance. And so, when one of them gets sick, she consults CVS as long as possible, and then rushes her kid to the ER when it gets really bad. But that’s an even bigger expense that she can’t pay. Suddenly, your tax plan is costing Montgomery General more money that it can’t afford to loose. And look at that, there’s suddenly talk that they might be moving because all the people that come in can’t afford to pay. You might not think much about going the extra distance to Suburban, but you will when the ambulance driver takes another five minutes to get you to the ER when you’re in a medical crisis. That $1,200 extra per year isn’t going to get you to the ER any quicker.

So, I think I’ll stick to paying my property taxes, and heck, throw in Rendell’s gambling revenue. I’d rather pay more to make sure that the kids in my neighborhood have a better education. (For the record, I don’t have, nor plan to have, any children.)

Please feel free to actually quote me and not come up with material and attribute it to me.


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