U.S.CENSUS BUREAU American Community Survey
and why you should refuse to fill it out.
The American Community Survey (ACS) is an ongoing statistical survey by the U.S. Census Bureau. The letter comes to a randomly selected house addressed to “the resident” and asks you to respond by going to their website where you will be asked a lot of personal and highly invasive questions regarding how much you earn, what you pay for utilities, what utilities you use, how many bathrooms, bedrooms, age of your house, exactly what time you leave for work, and other very unnecessary personal questions etc. The survey asks for more information, and at a higher frequency, than the simple enumeration required by U.S. Constitution Article I Section 2.
Despite the GAO’s conclusion that the Census Bureau has the authority to conduct the survey under 13 U.S.C. § 141 and 13 U.S.C. § 193, several U.S. representatives have challenged the ACS as unauthorized by the Census Act and violative of the Right to Financial Privacy Act. Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, who opposes the ACS, said of that the founding fathers of the United States “never authorized the federal government to continuously survey the American people.
The agents working for the Census Bureau prefer to gain cooperation by trying to convince respondents of the importance of participation. Failing that, they are quick to tell you that it is required by law. (Title 13, Code, Sections 141, 193, and 221) and that you could be fined. The Department of Commerce has stated that those who receive a survey form are legally obligated to respond to the ACS. Those who decline to complete the survey often receive follow-up phone calls or visits to their homes from Census Bureau personnel who keep coming back after you have told them you will not agree to complete their survey. A friend told me she once worked for them and their task was to collect GPS coordinates of where the front door was of each and every residence as well as verify the address in the database.
People who have refused to comply to this invasion of privacy have reported being harassed with numerous phone calls and home visits by agents who, after failing to convince you to do your “civic duty,” have used threats and intimidation about how they must comply by law or they can be fined for refusing to fill out the survey or for willfully providing false information. To date, no person has ever been prosecuted for refusing to answer the ACS. Former Director of the Census Bureau Kenneth Prewitt remarked that the Department of Commerce is “not an enforcement agency” and that “the Department of Justice would have to do the prosecution, and we don’t recommend that.
I think the time has come for some civil disobedience and the intrusive nature of this American Community Survey makes is the perfect place to start. The American people need to draw a line in the sand and tell the reprobates in the federal government we will no longer tolerate their usurpations of power.
These agents don’t care about your constitutional rights and they don’t read your cover letters. They have no respect for your freedom or right to privacy and will just ignore your protest and refusal and continue their harassing tactics. Collections agencies are not allowed to use these tactics so what makes these people think they have a right to?
If you order a trespasser to leave AND leave you alone and said trespasser continues to attempt to engage you in conversation, you can press charges for harassment as well as trespassing. There are statutes that make harassment a misdemeanor. Simple English: If they don’t leave when you order them to do so, call the law. You do NOT have to wait until they return to press charges.
While this survey letter and the agents assures people that the survey is “completely confidential” it would be wise to remember that Census Bureau information was used to locate thousands of Japanese American Citizens and round them up during World War II. The internment of Japanese Americans in the United States was the forced relocation and incarceration during World War II of between 110,000 and 120,000 people of Japanese ancestry who lived on the Pacific coast in virtually slave labor camps in the interior of the country.