The first question on the 2010 Census reads:
How many people were living or staying in this house, apartment, or mobile home on April 1, 2010? (taken from the online version of the form)
So, FIVE. There are five people who live in this house, up three from 10 years ago, who'd ever have imagined! And that is the only thing we're going to tell the Census, even if they come here and visit us again.
Actually, looking at Question 2, I suppose I'd be okay with marking "No Additional People" just to make sure they know that there really and truly are only five people here. Everything else, including name, sex, race, etc. we're leaving blank. I don't really care if they've asked this since 1790 (as you'll see if you go over there and look at the questionnaire).
According to the website referenced above:
Each question helps to determine how more than $400 billion will be allocated to communities across the country.
I'm totally opposed to the redistribution of that $400 BILLION (redistribution = taking from some and then giving back to others, "for the greater good" or "for the children" or for other reasons). It is wrong for them to take the money, even for worthy goals. So I am not going to help them determine anything along those lines. I'm just not.
Oh, looking more at the website, I have learned that we will probably be visited:
Do I have to talk to the census taker?
Yes. Your participation in the 2010 Census is vital and required by law, (Section 221, of Title 13 of the U.S. Code). However, rather than rely on criminal charges, the Census Bureau is very successful in getting participation by explaining the importance of the questions we ask and how the information benefits our communities.
So nice--they don't rely on criminal charges, because they're "successful" at "getting participation." You know why they're successful? Because most people don't even take half a second to question this at all.
We are so accustomed to following such rules--we're used to handing over all manner of information to the driver's license bureau and the car tag bureau. We sign up our kids for government schools and pay our taxes and take advantage of tax credits and are grateful for the money we're allowed to keep. We expect them to tell us which drugs are safe and which medical procedures we can have and which food is salmonella-free, because we've lost the ability to determine these things for ourselves.
You know what? I'd be happy if more people just took a few minutes to think about what they're doing when filling this information out. Even if they decide to provide it anyway. Just think for a moment about how much we have become dependent on the government. Think about how we are supposed to be grown adults, and how much of our lives are being determined, even in small ways, by other people who think they know better than we do how best to choose the Good for ourselves.
It may seem like a small thing--and it really is--but it's just one way I can say "No. This far, and no further." The more we all say this, in big and in small ways, the better to preserve what is left of our eroding freedoms.