16 April 2010 ~ 0 Comments

Undocumented Immigrants: A Case of Taxation Without Representation

nullThat’s right. Yesterday was April 15, the filing deadline for taxes in the United States. I just filed my taxes with an $800 LLC annual tax to the state.

Study after study has shown that undocumented immigrants pay income, sales, business, and property taxes. We won’t reiterate those points.

One of the greatest ironies of undocumented existence is how different federal agencies treat immigrants. The Internal Revenue Service reaches out to the undocumented to get our taxes. At the same time, the Department of Homeland Security conducts raids on businesses and breaks families apart. With breadwinners in detention, small businesses without informal labor, mounting legal fees and increasing fear, ICE delivers collateral damage not just to immigrant communities, but to the overall economy.

Tea baggers took to the streets yesterday, riled up about the national debt and tax burden, even though almost half of them don’t pay any federal income tax and the rallies cost taxpayers some $14,000. That is certainly productive.

Maybe more than tea-baggers, it is the undocumented (and D.C. residents) who should take to the streets and complain about taxation without representation. As Kemi Bello posted yesterday, politicians are merely paying lip-service to immigrant communities, with no plans to really push for an immigration reform bill this year. The Hill just confirmed the split within Democrats on immigration reform.

In the meantime, we are stuck paying up for past and present wars, an over-bloated and unjustified Pentagon budget that is the biggest contributor to our national debt. But we’ll scapegoat those “illegal aliens” anyway. Happy Tax Day.

Photo Credit: Poldavo

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