Anti-War Activists Plan Tax Day Protests

There’s another wave of “Tax Day” protests coming this year. Here’s a press release from the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee about some of them:

Refusing to Pay for Cruise Missiles and Drone Strikes:

30 Years of Tax Day Antiwar Protests

On people in communities across the United States will be leafleting, marching, doing street theatre, committing civil disobedience, and picketing at post offices, IRS offices, federal buildings, among other public spaces, using materials calling attention to the harmful effects of military spending. A list of U.S. Tax Day events with links to international actions can be found at is also the third annual Global Day of Action on Military Spending.

, during his first term, President Ronald Reagan set off a massive buildup in the U.S. armed forces that stands out on historical graphs of U.S. military budgets since World War Ⅱ. This motivated thousands of taxpayers to resume the civil disobedience (begun during the Vietnam War) by refusing to pay taxes to buy cruise missiles and other weapons, and led to the formation of the National War Tax Resistance Coordinating Committee (NWTRCC). In that same year Archbishop Raymond Hunthausen of Seattle, risking official censure, withheld half his income tax to protest nuclear weapons, calling on others to do the same.

The spike in military spending surpasses that of the Reagan years. Today U.S. taxpayers are buying even more expensive weapons systems, new nuclear weapons plants, assassinations by unmanned drones, and soaring interest payments on the national debt along with burgeoning health care costs for thousands of wounded veterans.

On , an ad placed in a Massachusetts weekly began, “We refuse to pay taxes for the violence of war preparations and other military expenditures including present military involvement in other countries. Over half of the federal income taxes are used for military expenses.” Many of the 120 signers still refuse today and still protest on tax day, joined by newer activists who have been provoked into protesting taxes for the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq as well as the endless war on terror.

Massachusetts residents Randy Kehler and Betsy Corner were signers of that ad. Despite a house seizure and other collection efforts by the IRS, Kehler and Corner say, “With the federal government running up huge deficits by spending trillions of taxpayer dollars on weapons and war, at the expense of its own people (especially its soldiers) and the people of other countries, we invite our fellow citizens to join us in saying ‘No!’ and to begin re-directing their federal tax money to local projects that meet genuine human needs.”

On the evening of in Berkeley, California, members of Northern California War Tax Resistance and the People’s Life Fund will be taking this advice and presenting grants of resisted war taxes totaling over $20,000 to local social service, peace, and justice organizations. That event and others from Maine to Kentucky to Washington are posted online with contacts at

Contact NWTRCC to talk with individual war tax resisters and refusers.

Global Day of Action on Military Spending also has a list of actions being done around the world on .

From the Brooklyn Daily Eagle:

Catholic Vets Refuse Taxes In Gerson Row

Queens Foes Warn They Won’t Pay Until Communist Is Removed

Property owners among the 149 members of Richmond Hill Post, Catholic War Veterans, will refuse to pay their real estate taxey until Simon W. Gerson, a member of the Communist party, is removed from his office as confidential examiner to the Borough President of Manhattan, it was learned today.

This was decided at a meeting Thursday in the post quarters, 115–16 Liberty Ave., Richmond Hill, pending consideration and release by the organization’s executive committee. Similar action is asked of other divisions of the Catholic War Veterans.

Will Deposit Taxes

To forestall foreclosure of their property as a result of the tax strike, members of the post will deposit their taxes in escrow with banks and loan companies holding mortgages on their property. The taxpayers declared they were willing to bear the 7 percent penalty for late payment of the levy.

The resolution adopted follows:

“Be it resolved that in so far as the Mayor of the City of New York and the President of the Borough of Manhattan have seen fit to ignore the protest formerly taken by our organization and countless other organizations and citizens of our city and State against the appointment of Simon W. Gerson as confidential adviser and secretary to the President of the Borough of Manhattan and have seen fit to retain Mr. Gerson as a public servant on the city payroll and Mr. Gerson still continues to act as a public servant of the City of New York although an avowed Communist and as such an open enemy to the Constitution of the United States and the principles upon which our country is founded,

Refuse to Pay Taxes

“We, the members of this post, refuse to be a party to the actions taken by our public officials and pledge ourselves to do everything in our power to bring the career of Mr. Gerson as a public official to a close as speedily as possible by refusing to pay our taxes now due on our property, so that the funds necessary to supply Mr. Gerson with his weekly pay check may not be available to our Mayor and President of the Borough of Manhattan, and

“We further resolve that we will request our friends and neighbors and other available citizens that we come in contact with to pursue the same course of action;

Urge Similar Action

“Be it further resolved that copies of this resolution be forwarded to the county, State and national departments of our organization with the request that they take similar action,

“Be it further resolved also, that copies of this resolution be forwarded to the Mayor of the City of New York and to the President of the Borough of Manhattan.”

William F. McCumiskey is commander of the post.