An interview with former Catholic bishop Thomas Gumbleton was aired on Democracy Now! . He briefly addressed war tax resistance. Excerpts:
Amy Goodman: Bishop Gumbleton, . What do you think of war tax refusal, war tax resistance, refusing to pay taxes that go to war?
Thomas Gumbleton: I feel strongly that that would be one of the things that people should try to do. Now… in fact, for the most part, I haven’t been paying federal taxes for a number of years. But I can do it because I don’t need much income, and so I can stay under the level where I’m taxed.
Amy Goodman: You haven’t paid federal taxes because…?
Thomas Gumbleton: Because I feel a good portion of those taxes goes to our war budget, which is our so-called defense budget, but it’s really a war budget. It’s the largest of any nation in the world. And years ago, Pope Paul Ⅵ said the arms race — and that’s what we are doing with our defense budget — is, in itself, an act of aggression against the poor. Using that money for weapons and strategies to use them is taking money away from the poor and causing them to starve. We should be using our natural resources and our wealth to promote development and to promote justice in the world. When you have a world where there’s such a gap between the rich and the poor, and such huge numbers suffering because of that, the church has a real responsibility to use whatever income it can bring to — I mean, our nation has a responsibility to use its income to help development happen, because that’s the basis for peace.