Brooklyn Woman Grows Own Tobacco Rather Than Pay Tax

Some bits and pieces from here and there:


The Vote

From the issue of The Vote:

Why Pay Taxes?

“At Home” at Caxton Hall.

Refusal to pay Imperial taxes, which has been described as the best of all protests, was the subject of an interesting address given by Mrs. [Margaret] Kineton Parkes at the Caxton Hall on , when Mrs. [Edith] How Martyn presided and Mr. Bart Kennedy was also amongst the speakers. Mrs. Parkes introduced her subject by explaining that as one of the planks of the Suffrage platform was “Taxation without representation is tyranny” it was inconsistent for any Suffragist to pay Imperial taxes. They should not refuse to pay rates, for they had the municipal vote, but they should, if they wanted to be consistent to their principle, decline to pay Imperial taxes, such as inhabited house duty, taxes on armorial bearings, income-tax, &c. The society she represented, which was organising this refusal to pay Imperial taxes, had been in existence , and included Suffragists from every camp, Conservative, Liberal, Socialist, as well as non-party, and was making every effort to get a large number of influential women to refuse to pay taxes, and thus cause a block at Somerset House. The isolated refusal to pay was ineffective and only caused trouble to the refuser; but a large and unexpected number would cause considerable trouble to the Government and would bring the question at issue home to them. Even now it had been found that the Government rather than go to the trouble of selling up the recalcitrant “debtor,” and attracting attention to the principle involved, had quietly dropped the matter in several instances. Mrs. [Charlotte] Despard had had no application for taxes since she had been sold up .

This principle of taxation and representation she had found appealed to women who had not given the subject any previous consideration, and it always had an immediate influence on a male audience. A working woman was not asked to pay less taxes because she was a woman, though she was usually asked to receive less by her employer.

To married women with incomes she suggested that they should ask their husbands not to fill in the amount in the space left on the income-tax paper for details of wife’s income. Then, if they sent her a separate paper, she could refuse to pay. In the past they had not given the Government half enough work, and they should make it as difficult as possible for them to recover money from women. She asked anyone present who knew women who paid taxes to send in their names, that they might be approached by her society. The Women’s Freedom League had been the pioneers in this method of Government resistance.

Miss [Muriel] Matters, who spoke subsequently, observed that, while the Government gave the male taxpayer a vote as receipt for his money, they said to the woman, “Pay up and shut up.” Mrs. [Dora] Montefiore gave a brief account of how to make it difficult for the Government to recover taxes from women.…

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