Wednesday, February 17, 2010


“No taxation without representation!”

This familiar slogan heard through much of New England in 18th century America can still be heard today in, of all places, the capital of the United States, Washington, DC. Almost 600,000 citizens of the United States of America have no representation in the halls of congress. They pay full federal taxes and fight and die in foreign wars. In times past they were even subject to the military draft.

Eleanor Holmes Norton is the current “non-voting” delegate for DC in the House of Representatives. She can serve on and vote in committees, but not on the floor of the House, where it actually makes a difference. There is no representation of any kind in the U.S. Senate. If DC were a state they would have two Senators and one Congressional representative.

Washington DC is made up of activists, street performers, lawyers, politicians, garbage collectors, teachers, fighters, and lovers. It is a city of various ethnicities, cultures and lifestyles. The neighborhoods are wealthy and vibrant in some areas and poor and struggling in others. In short, DC is just a microcosm of the United States. A lively, thriving melting pot.

Across the river in Arlington, VA is the country’s National Cemetery. Among the dignitaries, presidents, Supreme Court justices and generals are the lesser known soldiers and sailors; men and women who honorably served their country. Many of whom died for it. And many of these were DC residents.

To live in a country that launched its independence based in no small part on the “no taxation without representation” concept, and to stroll the grounds at Arlington and see the number of DC residents buried there, to know some of them were drafted and ultimately died in a war not of their choosing, all the while knowing they had nobody in the United States Senate or the House of Representatives to speak for them or their fellow DC residents, is an injustice difficult to comprehend.

Today the U.S. enjoys an all volunteer military. And District residents are well represented within. Despite the injustice of being taxed without representation they still volunteer. They pay their taxes, they are patriotic, they are sincere, and they are honorable. They deserve better.

Check out DC Vote.


  1. MK,

    Very nice images here. Your trumpet player really stands out as a sepia, almost isolated in the spotlight, just a hint of the surrounding, but the main focus is right there! Well done.


  2. Thanks brother!

    I gotta find that guy and give him a print. Totally owe him!