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UScitizen's avatar

The U. S. census will begin in a few months. Should I participate?

Asked by UScitizen (4268 points ) December 20th, 2009

Is there a valid reason to respond? Or, is it only surrendering data to the government that could never help, and possible hurt, me?

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21 Answers

Kelly_Obrien's avatar

It is simply used to spread money around various neighborhoods, and redistrict political wards.

HighShaman's avatar

I was under the impression that it is a Criminal Offense NOT to participate .
I knew some folks who got into serious trouble for refusing to answer the Census takers questins and sent her away….
Things may have changed; BUT I wouldn’t want to risk it over some simple questions .

john65pennington's avatar

Yes and so should all the illegal immigrants. don’t you just know they will run when they see a G-man or woman knocking on their door. they will think its Immigration knocking to send them back home. thats funny.

Kayak8's avatar

As someone who works in public health, we use census data on a regular basis to track diseases and make sure there isn’t some new epidemic or outbreak happening. It also allows us to more accurately appropriate resources to addressing health problems.

As stated above, it does get used to gerrymander (redistrict) political wards.

The census bureau has already sent out their really long questionnaire (that goes to like one of every 100 households—I received it and had to complete it under penalty of law). The actual census is a much shorter form (really, it is) and the people only knock on your door if you have NOT completed the document.

75movies's avatar

Don’t do it. Then your area’s money came be spent in mine. Thanks.

janbb's avatar

I can’t imagine a reason for not cooperating with the census. The positive uses of valid data on population are innumerable.

laureth's avatar

The greater the population in your state, the more representation you get in Congress. That would seem to be a help, not a hurt.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

I always resented the intrusion. I’ve made it a sort of hobby to duck the census, being a property owner makes it a bit more difficult. I may have been counted by some indirect means, but have not filled out a census form in my entire adult life. As @HighShaman said it is technically a crime to refuse to participate; the trick is to never “refuse” but just avoid them. My experience in ducking the census three times has been that they send you a form twice, then they try to call you twice, since I’m not home during the day they will find no one there if a census taker goes there. I know that the government has many ways of gathering information about me, I just don’t wish to actively participate in it.

Buttonstc's avatar

Considering your SN, why wouldn’t you participate?

Or am I the only one struck by the irony between the question and the asker’s choice of online identity?

janbb's avatar

@Buttonstc Hit me in the face too.

Jacket's avatar

To be a person that seems to be very pro america, you seem likewise anti-america. The government is not all bad you know. The military is 100 % government as well. This is a part of american democracy. It is not only rigthts. There are some responsiblities.

HighShaman's avatar

@Jacket A person can be very much “pro America” and still have some very bad feelings about the government and the way that it is corrupted and ran….

There is so much that we are not told about , mislead and lied to about .... BUT; it is all that we have… until there ae more who wake up and DEMAND Change.

Jacket's avatar

@HighShaman Sure I agree, but just because one is lied to or misled sometimes, it doesn’t mean that every part of government should be opposed. A democracy where the people don’t participate isn’t really a democracy.

Kelly_Obrien's avatar

@Jacket…To what mysterious democracy do you refer? The USA is a Republic, not a democracy.

TominLasVegas's avatar

I think you have to.

SirGoofy's avatar

Just fill the damn thing out and move on. It’s a big whoop-tee-doo.

HighShaman's avatar

@Jacket I did not mean to imply that I would condone not taking part in the Census .

I was just pointing out that because you are Pro American ; does not mean that we need to agree with the government…. although we DO need to co-operate if it means keeping our collective butts out of the lock up .

beancrisp's avatar

The only constitutional reason for the census is to get a head count for the purpose of drawing up congressional districts. Your only obligation is to write down everybody that live at your residence.

Jacket's avatar

@Kelly_Obrien The US is a republic and not a democracy? I think you should read up on that. A republic is a democracy. The republic and a non-republic democracy differs in the chief of state. Some democracies have a king. A republic has a president. Differing between a republic and a democracy is like differing liberty and freedom.

@HighShaman Gotcha.

Arisztid's avatar

I have never participated in one.

I do not know if this is odd but I have never had a census taker come to my door (I lived most of my life in California if that makes a difference) and do not remember one calling.

I just looked up the form and would have to fill out “some other race” since my ethnicity is not listed. I wonder if I would get in trouble for writing in “the Indy 500” since we are not recognized.

I really would not like the thought of providing all of that information.

Buttonstc's avatar

You could also try “Kentucky Derby” if they get p*ssed about
the Indy-500 answer.

:D

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