Our Tax Code

The tax exclusions, exemptions, deductions, and credits in the U.S. tax code aimed at helping all individuals and families build economic security instead provided $1.2 trillion in support to mostly wealthy white households. The U.S. tax code was intended to more evenly collect and distribute the aggregate resources of our nation to care for all, over the course of its 111-year existence, this system has been molded by wealthy, largely white, elites and our policymakers into a wealth-hoarding mechanism for the nation’s most privileged people seeking to amass obscene levels of wealth.

As a result, this perversion of purpose has further fueled our nation’s never-ending pursuit of individual wealth (wealth held by a single individual or family). More broadly, individual wealth-building has choked our nation’s ability to accumulate enough collective wealth (wealth controlled by the public through government budgets and monetary policy) to care for all of our people. The result debilitates economic justice, but also harms everyone—in particular, children and families of color—because it unnecessarily starves our nation of resources that can demonstrably care for and improve our collective well-being.

Out of $2T in expenditures that flow through the tax code, about $1.2T of these tax breaks fund twelve of the largest and most prominent tax programs that are supposed to bolster our incomes, help afford housing, start or maintain a business, support health care and education and family care, and allow us to pass on something to future generations. However, out of this $1.2T pot, 80% is going to white folks and wealthy folks.

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