[saymaListserv] War Tax Resistance

Perry Treadwell perryt at bellsouth.net
Tue Apr 4 09:33:00 JEST 2006

Here is an editorial the Atlanta Journal Constitution refuses to print. 

To the IRS and interested others, 2006

Again this year I am refusing to pay for war and the attendant torture. 
I am sending the calculated tax to a women's shelter.
I have been denied my right to practice my religion for the past 35 
years. I am a member of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) and 
believe that I should not contribute to war and killing in any way. This 
includes paying personal income tax that goes for past, present and 
future military endeavors. For the past 35 years, I have refused to send 
that portion of my estimated personal income tax that goes for these 
endeavors which amounts to at least 50 percent of this tax. Instead, I 
have sent this portion to shelters for women and children. For many 
years I have reduced my income below the taxable level.
Presently, the Internal Revenue Service is leveeing my social security 
payments for past refusal.
The religious testimony refusing to contribute to war has its Quaker 
origins with the founder of the Religious Society of Friends, George 
Fox, who said, “I live in the virtue of that life and power that takes 
away the occasion of all wars.” He refused to join Cromwell’s army 
during the overthrow of King Charles in the 17th century or to pay for 
that war.
During the French and Indian War of the 18th century, Friends refused to 
pay for the war saying, “...as we cannot be concerned in wars and 
fightings, so neither ought we to contribute thereby by paying the tax 
directed by said act, though suffering the consequence of the refusal.”
During the Revolutionary War, Quakers also refused to pay. Many were 
persecuted and lost their property. As President, George Washington 
replied to the Quaker position, “Your principle and conducts are well 
known to me, and it is doing the people called Quakers no more than 
justice to say that (except their declining to share with others in the 
burdens of common defense) there is no denomination among us who are 
more exemplary and useful citizens.”
Conscientious Objection was recognized as an alternative to military 
service during the 20th century but Friends were still forced to pay for 
war. During the past 50 years the United States has become one of the 
largest arms dealers in the world, if not the largest, contributing to 
wars or the threat of war all over the world. The Business of America is 
So this year I will send in my tax return indicating my calculated tax 
and a letter explaining why, as a member of the Religious Society of 
Friends, I cannot pay for war. Then I will be charged with penalties and 
interest for several years before my social security is again leveed. By 
that time thousands more Iraqis will be killed as well as hundreds of 
American youth whom we have sent to kill in a “preemptive war.”

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