Monday, October 18, 2010

My newfound interest in constitutionality

[The following letter, which I sent to the editor of the Tulsa World, was published on Saturday, October 16.]

Hats off to the Tulsa World for editorializing against the "willful disregard for state law" on the part of some Tulsa-area school districts ("Bad lesson," Oct. 7). Your stance is especially admirable given your strong disagreement, as a matter of public policy, with the law itself.

To illustrate why civil disobedience should not be the first course of action, consider the following. Our state Constitution says that all people have an "inherent right" to "the enjoyment of the gains of their own industry." On the advice of my $250-an-hour counsel, I am persuaded that a 5.5 percent income tax violates this constitutional right. (Counsel tells me a 2.5 percent rate would be constitutional, but 5.5 percent is unconstitutional.) And because this inherent right is safeguarded in our state Constitution -- in the Bill of Rights no less! -- clearly this trumps a mere statute. Thus, I don't have to pay my state income tax.

I hope some school officials will come visit me in the pokey -- assuming I'm not bunking with them.

No comments: