Monday, April 5, 2010

What taxes pay for

This post was previosly posted by the Miami Herald

April 5 marks what Florida's anti-tax crusaders refer to as ``Tax Freedom Day.'' In 2010, Floridians must work 95 days, or until April 5, to ``pay off'' or meet their tax obligations to the government.

Tax Freedom Day will be trumpeted as a day to celebrate liberation from government tyranny, a call to lower taxes and relieve us Americans. What a frame job! I, for one, am proud to pay my taxes. Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes put it best: ``I like paying taxes. With them I pay for civilization.''

Taxes pay for public education, for vital services like hospitals and a police force. Taxes pay for water, infrastructure and unemployment checks. I see paying taxes as my civic responsibility. I tithe at the Church of Good Government. Every day I benefit from the taxes paid before mine.

So, no, I won't be celebrating Tax Freedom Day, at least not the way taxophobes intend. But I will rejoice in the greatest gift given to me by my taxes: freedom.

Gretchen Beesing

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