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Annual Protest to IRS

Published: July 10, 2020


Dear Friends,

Thought you would be interested in this letter Jan and I sent to the IRS, refusing our taxes for war. We would love to hear from you how you are dealing with the challenge of working and praying for peace and paying for war.

Here is the letter:

Dear Friends at the IRS,

We are Quakers and cannot in conscience pay for the killing of other human beings, or pay for war and preparations for war. Human life is too precious to drop bombs on people because we do not like their governments. Developing a new generation of nuclear weapons which could put an end to life on our beautiful planet is immoral and insane. Giving the Pentagon hundreds of billions of dollars does not increase the security of our people when we are cutting funds for schools, libraries, job training, diplomacy work at the State Dept. and now even the EPA and the transition to a renewable energy future.

The wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria, Yemen and elsewhere, and increased  use of drones have NOT increased our security, but rather have created more enemies of the United States. Our tax dollars are also being used to prepare for wars with Russia, Iran, North Korea and China which could easily, by accident or intention, become a nuclear war which could kill billions of people.  Let’s end the “war on terror” and all wars and bring our tax dollars home to meet the needs of the American people.

Fifty-four percent of everyone’s tax dollars go for wars and preparations for wars. Together with our IRS Form, we are sending a check for 46% of what we owe  made out to the Dept. of Health and Human Services.   We ask that you designate all those funds for health, education and human well-being – and NONE for war and killing. The other 54% which goes for war and killing we are contributing to organizations working for peace and justice, and programs meeting human and environmental needs in the US and around the world.

Instead of paying for war and killing, we are joining together with others to build what Martin Luther King called the “Beloved Community.”  We hope and pray that all the taxes from people worldwide can go for schools, good health care, food and housing for all people on earth which will help  create a  healthy planet for our children and all future generations.


David and Jan Hartsough


from David Hartsough, San Francisco Friends Meeting (7/8/2020)