Monday, June 9, 2008

Where's My Check, Uncle Sam?

The very notion of it sends shivers down anti-immigration activists. This fact is well known but remains largely ignored in their hateful arguments, but it is true: undocumented immigrants pay taxes.

People who want to pay income taxes to the federal government but do not have a social security number can request an ITIN – Individual Taxpayer Identification Number – from the IRS. This number does not qualify its possessor to be legally employed in the United States, and it is solely used for the purpose of paying income taxes.

On May 2, the IRS started sending rebate checks to 130 million households after the passage of the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008 (H.R. 5140) passed on January 29 and will continue until July 11. These rebate checks are intended to boost the United States’ floundering economy; however, not everyone who filed a tax return this year will get one.

Despite the fact that many undocumented immigrants comply with the law and pay taxes on their wages, they were negated a rebate check based solely on their lack of a social security number, which is one of the contingencies to receiving a check.

This injustice reflects the anti-immigrant sentiment ubiquitous in the country today. People who file a tax return should get a rebate check, period. After all, their taxes, too, contribute to improve our economy. Congress seems to be sending a clear message. “We’ll take your money but will not acknowledge your presence.”

Undocumented immigrants are not the only ones who got the shaft. Workers whose spouses do not qualify for a social security number were denied the stimulus also. These include American soldiers stationed abroad married to foreign nationals, Silicon Valley high-tech professionals with H-1B visas whose spouses are not permitted to work, and roughly a million legal immigrants whose spouses are awaiting visas outside the country.

As immigration reform stalls in Washington, undocumented immigrants will continue get the short end of the stick, even while acquiescing to every demand made to them by their adopted country.


Symsess said...

Welcome back!! Thanks for the great post.

It's truly sad that while everyone enjoys their 'stimilus' so many are being hunted as villians. These people, of course, pay taxes too. On top of that they're the only hope we have to stabilize this ecomony.

Well I guess as far as the anti's go at least the guy selling "build da fence" stickers is going to make a killing.

Damn Mexicans said...

Thanks symsess, but it's not me doing the posting. I've been busy lately and have taken on "partners". Notice how the writing has improved??? That should have been your first clue. But thanks, you made him proud of his first post.