Single People Discrimination: Say What?
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Olivia_WebMD_Staff posted:
On the Today Show this morning, a panel discussed the topic of supposed discrimation against singles in this country , particularly that married people get more tax breaks.

And, author Bella DePaulo drives the topic home in her book, Singled Out.

What say you: Are single people discriminated against in the U.S.?
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JenPBDBP2 responded:
I don't know if its properly called discrimination but I do think we give too many official benefits to married people. I don't see that there is a good reason to give married people tax breaks, etc. It's government intrusion in private life. The only reason people should get married is because of a desire for lifelong committment (religious or otherwise), not to get a better tax rate or refund.

Assuming we are talking single with no children:

Single people pay less for insurance than married. Married people often have to pay much more (especially if the cost is the same whether for 2 people or 10 people). They get the same number of vacation days but are less likely to have to 'waste' them taking care of sick children/spouses.

If however we're talking single parents then once again I think they get the short end of the stick but again i would not call it discrimination. I think that's a powerful term and should not be watered down in cases of straightforward unfairness. The ability for a single parent to list themselves as head of household is not as good on one's taxes as listing as a married couple.
 
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apprd replied to JenPBDBP2's response:
re: "I don't see that there is a good reason to give married people tax breaks, etc. It's government intrusion in private life."

think it through from the government's perspective. statistically, single people have less children than married people. less children = less adults in the future. and less adults in the future = less potential* tax payers.

*i say "potential" because there are stats that over 40% of the adult population in this country pay no taxes (and the majority of that number are in the lower tax brackets, not the "1%")

so yeah, the US government discriminates against single people when it comes to tax rates because they just don't contribute as much as married people (any wonder it is taking so long for gay marriage laws to be universal? while lesbians can certainly have children, gay men cannot...and adoption is not creating another potential taxpayer, so the government has no incentive)
 
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Fitterin12 responded:
I cant call it discrimination, but i will say that it is totally unfair. I dont believe that a married couple should get all the breaks, unless they are married with children. Single people pay taxes too, therefore, they too should be allowed those same tax breaks.
 
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shouldabinwitch responded:
I don't know about the tax breaks and I am in the UK but I think what I have say is relevant. Single people like myself are certainly discrinated against, particularly if they, like myself have no children. I am a bit shocke at myself for feeling this way these days but at the age of 53 I became too ill to continue working having worked and paid tax from age 13. I've often earned very good salaries and have paid my income tax, not to mention all the indirect tax like sales tax (VAT here). I was shocked at how little financial/medical/practical help was available to me and now feel quite bitter that I havecontributed to funding other people's children through the state education system, their health care, their social housing etc. But now there is very little for me in my time of need. Furthermore I have no children who will call round to make sure I have what I need. I have fears of being found dead months after the event like you read about! I have always loved children and intended to have some but didn't meet the right man so chose not to be a burden to the state and become a single parent. It's sad that I've developed this bitterness because I have neve felt like this before but I really do feel that I haven't had a fair deal from the tax/public services balance!
 
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JenPBDBP2 replied to apprd's response:
"think it through from the government's perspective. statistically, single people have less children than married people. less children = less adults in the future. and less adults in the future = less potential* tax payers."

I think that suggesting people will suddenly not get married or have children if the government doesn't give freebies is overreaching just a bit.
 
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1nt3rnalc0mbu5t1on responded:
This is absolutely rediculous, I am a single person and I do not feel discriminated against. I think that the world is just getting to sensative. We are under the impression that life is supposed to be fair and equal, well its not. Look at the 1% they make all this money, yet they feel they are being discriminated against because they make so much money and everyone wants them to pay more taxes (even some of the 1%) If you look and search hard enough everyone is being discriminated against in some way, shape or form. So my advice is to deal with it. I applaud Ms. DePaulo, she is smart enough to write a book on this topic and a ton of people are going to buy it, so she can laugh all the way to the bank.
 
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1nt3rnalc0mbu5t1on replied to JenPBDBP2's response:
I have known of several people who have had more kids just because of the tax breaks they can get...cutting off those benefits might just stop them from having extra kids that get to mooch off the system.
 
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JenPBDBP2 replied to 1nt3rnalc0mbu5t1on's response:
can we include married couples in that or were you already referring to them?
 
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bob249 responded:
I presume the tax code was written when having children was to be encouraged.

Or possibly because the writers had children and wanted a break for themselves.

Now that we are consuming natural resources at an incredible rate, it would be better to reduce the rate of increasing population .

Since the thread was tax-based, another way to look at it is if there are increasing numbers paying into the various government run bureaucracies, the systems can support themselves longer. On the other hand, if the increasing numbers are not contributing, are committing crimes, consuming via government bureaucracies, thus Reducing the available benefits, then the plan is backfiring.

Sadly, it becomes more difficult on an ongoing basis to be optimistic.