President Trump’s $750 tax payment is legal, but immoral

401K+2012+%7C+Flickr

401K 2012 | Flickr

Jennifer Youberg

On Sept. 27 The New York Times released information regarding President Donald Trump’s previously concealed tax returns. Reporting financial losses and bankruptcies, he was allowed to avoid paying income tax for 10 out of the past 15 years.

Trump immediately went on a rant on Twitter the following day, calling the article “fake news” and claimed that he “pays many millions of dollars in taxes, but was entitled, like everyone else, to depreciation & tax credit.”

This three-part Twitter rant from the president continues to target left-leaning and Democratic news outlets by calling them “fake news,” and he consistently deflects on the issue of his tax returns. He claims to have paid millions in taxes but has failed to provide the receipts that he did so.

Many New York City residents paid more than $750 in taxes in 2017 and, at the same time, earned considerably less than the president. Although he boasts about donating his $400,000 yearly salary that he obtains while sitting in office, it still frustrates many Americans that the rich are able to utilize tax loopholes.

While millionaires continue to find ways to avoid paying taxes, middle class and lower-class families are stuck with the burden of paying an immense amount of taxes that millionaires can get away without paying. Some common loopholes in a capitalist society include tax deductions, tax credits, financial losses and overseas banking institutions.

Citizens aren’t obligated to pay more than what they legally owe the IRS. However, a millionaire paying $750 in 2017 for taxes is disheartening and creates distrust in the government.

In a 2017 paper written by the National Bureau of Economic Research, offshore banking has become a breeding ground for tax evasion and tax avoidance among millionaires looking to avoid paying high taxes in the United States.

The IRS isn’t afraid of stating that hiding offshore income is a crime, yet it is still rampant with businesses located in the United States. The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act allows for automatic reporting from partnered institutions offshore; however, many millionaires often slip through the cracks.

These loopholes may be legal to an extent, but that doesn’t mean it’s not immoral.

In a capitalist society, such as the United States, taxation is an integral part of a country because it keeps a government within each essential state going.

Yet, according to Beverly I. Moran, a professor of law and sociology at Vanderbilt Law School in a 2008 SMU Law Review, “The United States tax system manages to violate fundamental capitalist principles,” which directly negates what Adam Smith, the proclaimed father of capitalism, once stated.

Taxes were fundamental in creating the United States, where the government hurts the poor and lets the rich get away with anything.

When Trump and other millionaires can avoid paying taxes and can opt for tax breaks, there is something wrong with the system, and it needs vital changes to prevent this from occurring any further.