Friday, March 5, 2010

Fill Out The Form And Send The Damn Thing Back

I just got my census form in the mail. I hope some people don’t leave it in the mailbox thinking its junk mail because it came in a bag. I also hope my people in the city don’t have the same urgency in filling it out as they did with voting. If they do we will get about the same amount of funding as a small village. I know there are more people here than the official numbers say there is. You can drive around and see it. We need to get folks to take action to get close to the right amount. This is a true story. My best friend was so set against participating in the census the last time that the guy who was assigned to his neighborhood had to hide around the corner and sneak up on us when we drove up one afternoon. He had this defeated look on his face like he gave in to the system. I know he’s not the only one that feels that way but I hope everyone fills out the questionnaire and sends it back.

Even if you are offended by the word Negro you need to send it back anyway. Check off Negro, black, homeboy, or whatever applies. We just need to be counted so the government will know how many people are here. That means we have to put everyone on there. If your cousin is staying with you but still uses her address in Houston to get cheaper insurance it doesn’t matter. Put her on there. If your boyfriend is staying there put him on there. If your grown kids came back home because they were homesick and brought the grandkids too and they are all bunched into your house put them on there. The forms are our best shot because I don’t think the folks that walk around and count go to every spot of the neighborhood to count how many people are there. Let’s not give anyone a chance to use statistics to cut our money short. If I didn’t think we would all get indicted I would say to add three extra people to your tally for all the folks that are going to come home in the next few years as new housing opens. I’m sure they will take that under consideration in the final total. Then again, they might not. Either way if the count of how many people are here comes up short let’s make sure it’s not our fault because we only sent back half of the forms.


Mark Folse said...

I hope all the insurance cheaters don't skip filling it out thinking they'll get busted.

Not that I have any sympathy for those folks. I'd be all in favor of checkpoints where it turns out you have a Louisiana license and Texas plates and they just confiscate your car on the spot. No problem with that what so ever. Especially if the start out on Poydras with a preference of Lexus (Lexi?) and BMWs.

Because every one of those folks are driving my rates through the roof.

K. said...

It's especially important for African-Americans to fill out their forms because the census system is rigged against them in an unpublicized way. Here's how it works:

Black males are incarcerated in disproportionate numbers and typically imprisoned in areas with a heavy white population. For census purposes, the prisoners are counted as being residents of that area. There's a surface logic to this until you consider that it factors into Congressional redistricting and federal aid.

Thus, a young man from the South Bronx in jail at Sing Sing gets counted in the calculations of federal aid that goes to Ossining instead of his neighborhood in the Bronx. Ossining is 70% white and 14% African-American, and you can guess where most of them live. It's not that the people of Ossining don't deserve federal aid, but they are getting some of it at the expense of urban black families and neighborhoods. In red states, you have black men involuntarily helping to carve out red districts for right-wing congressman who hardly represent their best interests.

So, you're right: Fill out the form. It's the one action African-Americans can take to counteract what I've written about here.