LETTER- Citizenship is voluntary

<P>In his April 14 letter to the editor ["Sacrifice is Voluntary"], Evan Williams claims that "sacrifice is defined by its voluntary nature" and implies that taxation is illegitimate because he is continually forced to sacrifice earned assets against his will. Please allow me to remove all ideological hysteria that has surrounded the discourse and reveal the flaws in Williams' overall argument.
<P>The relationship between the citizens of the United States and the Federal government is based upon the two-step contract espoused by John Locke in his "Second Treatise of Government."
<P>The people of this society explicitly or tacitly sacrifice a portion of their autonomy to the majority will through an irrevocable contract. This majority then initiates a fiduciary contract with some sort of government that will protect the natural rights of each citizen. Thus we have the foundations of majority rule and the right to revolution and overthrow of government after a long train of abuses, if such is what the majority wills.
<P>What does this all mean? Through his United States citizenship, Williams has tacitly entered into an irrevocable contract and is bound by what the majority of the citizens desire. It appears that Williams will have to pay taxes to the American government as long as the majority of citizens want public schools, roads, national defense and clean water. Of course, if this remains unacceptable, he may break the contract by relocating to a country which does not adhere to such "un-American" tenets as those espoused by John Locke.
<P><B>Kate Ryan</B><BR>Charlottesville<BR><I>kateryan@virginia.edu
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