February 23, 2005
The Education Tax
While Ricky was driving through Mission City, he noticed several people carrying a sort of certificate in their hands. Wondering what was going on, he parked his car on the side of the street and approached a man who was carrying one of the certificates.
“What is that all about?” Ricky asked.
“It has to do with the government’s new policy,” the man replied.
“What does the government has to do with it?”
“Well, the city council recently enacted a law stating that those with a higher education should pay higher taxes than those who are not highly educated; the purpose of this certificate is to show your level of education to the tax collectors.”
“But why do people who have a better education have to pay more taxes than those who are not highly educated. Isn’t this a matter of choice?” Ricky said.
“You are right. However, the city council argues that those who are better educated have more job opportunities and better living conditions than those who are not highly educated,” the main responded.
As Ricky examined several certificates more closely, he noticed that most of them were high school diplomas.
Getting more interested in the subject, Ricky asked, “Buy why do most people carry a high school certificate? Is it because they are afraid to pay higher taxes?”
“You are right, my friend. The lower your level of education the less taxes you pay,” the man answered.
“But do government officials actually pay higher taxes since they have a higher educational level than most of the citizens in Mission City?” Ricky asked.
Feeling angry, the man quickly replied. “Of course not; the tax law excludes those who work for the government.”
“By the way, you should get a certificate before a tax collector appears or you will suffer the consequences of paying lots of taxes,” the man warned.
“Where do I get it?” Ricky curiously asked.
“There are plenty of places where you can get a fake high school diploma at a low cost. This will help you save a lot of money.”
The man pointed out a nearby place where Ricky could obtain a false high school diploma. Ricky walked to the place and obtained a “real-looking” document.
After exiting what seemed to be a grocery store, Ricky encountered a man who was wearing a black suit.
“What is your name, gentleman?” the suspicious man asked.
Before Ricky could answer, he noticed that the man was wearing a badge that read ‘Mr. Todd Wilkinson, Mission City Tax Collector.’
“My name is Ricky Springfield,” he nervously answered.
“May I see you education certificate?” the man asked.
“Sure,” Ricky replied, pulling the document out of his pocket.
While examining the document, the man asked, “So you only attended high school, ha? Why didn’t you continue studying?”
“That’s right, sir. I had to stop my education after finishing high school because I couldn’t afford to continue my education; my family was not in a good financial situation at that time.”
“Well, your tax fee is $10 dollars. This is the lowest tax fee possible since you only completed high school,” the tax collector said.
Ricky felt that he had no choice but to pay the fee and pulled a $10 bill out of his wallet and gave it to the tax collector. He then gave Ricky a receipt and thanked him for obeying the law; the collector then left and disappeared as he turned the corner at the end of the street.