It Has Arrived. It’s Time to Step Up

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Written by: Director Robert Groves

In the next few days, over 120 million households in the country will receive an envelope from the Census Bureau. Outside there is printed in a box a note that completing the short census form is mandatory by law. Inside is a cover note describing the census, the short census form, and a post-paid return envelope to one of the three census processing centers around the country.

It’s finally here – the time for all of us to do our part for the census. Knowing my own tendency to forget things, I’m going to fill mine out immediately because I know that the occupants of my apartment will be my wife and me on April 1. By doing it immediately, I won’t run the risk of putting it out of mind and seeing it gradually descend below the stack of bills on the table.

I hope you can do the same.

Then I have one other request – after you fill yours out, ask five friends or co-workers whether they filled their form out and mailed it back. Send an email out to your mailing list asking friends and associates to complete the form. We know from past censuses that the real cause of not filling it out and mailing it back is forgetfulness and procrastination, not opposition. You can help your friends do their civic duty.

The founding fathers asked us to do this each 10 years, as a cornerstone of their aspiration of representative democracy. They levied a $20 fine for noncompliance in 1790. They knew fair representation required everyone to participate in the census.

The 1790 Census asked for name, age, sex, and race, as directed by Congress in the March 1, 1790, Census Act. The 2010 Census is very close to that. I think that Thomas Jefferson (the first director of the census) and James Madison (as a key father of the census) would be happy with what the country has done this decade.

It’s our time now, to do our part to make the 2010 Census a success.

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63 Responses to It Has Arrived. It’s Time to Step Up

  1. Vicki Newman says:

    What kind of opposition do people have to filling out a simple form helping our counties and citties get the attention they deserve? I will be filling mine out very happily!

  2. Missy says:

    Me Too!

  3. S. Taylor says:

    I received my census form and where it says race..I am african american…the three choices given are black african american or negro…I find this very racist and offensive what is negro I do not see this on a job application..why would it be on a census this a short version of saying the N word? I think this should be addressed…

  4. Bill ruch says:

    The Census was formed to count people only (which I think is wrong) it should be to count citizens only, not people, since we have millions of illegal people here. Some of the new questions are personal and should be eliminated.

  5. ?????????????????? says:

    I have been waiting for WEEKS now to get my census so I can just fill it out, send it back and get it over with.
    If I seem annoyed, it’s because since the beginning of this year I’ve now gotten THREE letters announcing the arrival of the census and reminding me to fill it out.
    This is really silly to me since it would be more econommically sane to just out the forms when it’s time or at the very least just send me ONE reminder.

  6. Read The Constitution and Title 13 says:

    According to the Constitution, only the # of people at a location is required to be given during the census. This is question #1 and is colored differently than the rest of the census form. This leads me to believe this is the only question required to be answered. I have read Title 13 and there is nothing requiring any other answers to any other questions. The remaining data potentially offered by people on this form if they answer all questions are highly personally identifiable information and as these are NOT required by the Constitution nor by statute and are NOT required for the purpose of the census, I find it odd that the data being asked for other than question 1 is being asked for and being described as non-invasive by census propagandists.

  7. Charlie says:

    A lot, a waste of tax payers money, we all have social security cards and file federal taxes, do not understand how simple data collection can not be use to deteremine the census.

  8. Paul Hayes says:

    I will complete the census form. However, I will do so under protest. My reasons are simple.
    First, and most importantly, if anyone actually believes the information gathered via this census will be kept confidential is living in a fantasy world. There is no way this information will not be shared with any agency (federal, state or local) or business that wants it. Sure, the applicable law is quoted and re-quoted. The penalty? $5,000 or some jail time. Big deal. Those who pass on the information will collect millions of dollars for the sale of the information. And “supposedly” phone numbers will be destroyed. Yup. I’m sure. As soon as it is entered into the computers to track everyone who provides the information and to be sold to the highest (or lowest) bidder/briber. Just like names, dob, etc. This is not just a headcount for the reasons the census was created. It is now BUSINESS! Confidential? NOT A CHANCE. This is pure and simple a marketing goldmine.
    Second, if we are ever to become a colorless society, we need to stop making race so important. And all the rationale given by the “official” reasons for asking about race is so much . . .

  9. Bill Weber says:

    Census 2010
    What does the Constitution say about a census?
    The reference to a census in the Constitution (Article 1, Section 2, Clause 3) specifies an “enumeration” every 10 years for the purpose of apportioning representatives and direct taxes among the states. The outcome of the enumeration is to provide the total number of people living in a geographical region. In other words, the Constitution provides the government the power to count how many people live where you do. That’s it. Determining the ethnicity of people, their religion, home ownership, and other data is beyond the scope of the census.
    The census performs many useful functions for society. However, there is widespread evidence of the misuse of census data. Hitler used the European Census in his conquests across Europe. By law, the Census Bureau cannot share respondents’ answers with anyone, including the IRS, FBI, CIA or any other government agency. Do you think that law really works?
    General Sherman used census data to locate targets during the Civil War March though Georgia.
    When the US Government rounded up Japanese-Americans in 1942, they used the supposedly private census data to tell the soldiers how many Japanese lived on each block. That led to the internment of almost 110,000 Japanese-Americans on the West Coast, two-thirds of them were U.S. citizens. The Census Bureau has issued a formal apology and now reports that the Bureau did not protect Japanese-Americans.
    The Department of Homeland Security asked the Census Bureau in 2003 for details about where Arab populations live in the United States, receiving detailed information about any town where more than 1000 people from Arabic-speaking countries are living. They also got a multi-hundred-page breakdown by Zip codes of every person who self-identified on the census as Egyptian, Iraqi, Jordanian, Lebanese, Moroccan, Palestinian, Syrian, Arab/Arabic, or “Other Arab”. The Electronic Privacy Information Center discovered this via the Freedom of Information Act and posted the results.
    The IRS in 1983 attempted (largely unsuccessfully) to combine census data with private mailing lists in order to track down people who don’t file income taxes. The advancement of computer technology will provide a better ability for the IRS to abuse census data.
    Some other cases of census data being used inappropriately occurred in Montgomery County, MD; Pullman, Wash; Long Island Regional Planning Commission; and Urbana, IL; where census data released on a ‘block’ basis is used to check compliance with local building codes and zoning laws. A block can have as few as 6 houses; the average is 14. This clearly lets these governments pinpoint where to send their inspectors to charge people with violations.
    Information on race and home ownership is used to discover allocations of housing units that are discriminatory under the Civil Rights Act of 1984. Oxnard Park, California, uses census data to discover areas where landlords illegally discriminate against families with children. Information on occupations is used by corporations and government attorneys to construct affirmative-action quotas for different industries. Information on “place of birth” is used by the Civil Rights Commission as a baseline for determining discrimination by national origin.
    Ever hear of redlining? That’s when a group of banks and insurance companies decide not to insure a given area, and not to issue loans for homes in that area, because the area is chiefly minority. They find this out by using the Census tract data.
    Census tract data can also be used by police departments to profile minorities, and target immigrant communities.
    The privacy risks have even lead to public statements by politicians regarding the intrusiveness of census questions. The Washington Post quoted Former Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott of encouraging citizens not to answer invasive questions.
    Remember, if you’re over 18 and refuse to answer all or part of the Census, you can be fined up to $100. If you give false answers, you’re subject to a fine of up to $500. If you offer suggestions or information with the “intent to cause inaccurate enumeration of population,” you are subject to a fine of up to $1,000, up to a year in prison, or both. These penalties are rarely enforced.
    The 2010 Census will allow me an opportunity to help the Government understand that the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments protect my right to privacy. Government cannot compel extra-constitutional information from me without following due process, and “passing a law” is not due process.
    So in the end, I’ll only be answering the questions about how many people live here. I know that I may be subject to a fine. The Census Bureau will be free to contact me and ask for clarification, which will include recitations of relevant portions of the Constitution and legal precedents like Griswold v. Connecticut.
    The Declaration I Will Make To Census Takers
    “I hereby affirm that the provisions of Title 13 “requiring” me to disclose my race, personal financial data, birth date, or any other personal, private information to the Bureau of the Census, an agency of the United States government; constitutes an unreasonable, unwarranted search of my person, house, papers, and/or effects; and a governmental invasion of the sanctity of my home and the privacies of life. As such, these provisions violate the Fourth Amendment of the US Constitution, and are thus wholly void and I am not bound to obey them.
    I have completed the only those sections of the Census form pertaining to the Constitutionally-mandated actual enumeration, as follows:
    1. The actual number of people living at the address printed on the form, excluding untaxed Native Americans.
    2. Age of each person in accordance with US Const. Amendment XIV, Section 2.
    3. Sex of each person, in accordance with US Const. Amendment XIV, Section 2.
    I have thus fulfilled my obligation to the attainment of the actual enumeration of the populace of the United States.
    Any fine or other sanction that is levied by any office or organization stemming from the unconstitutional provisions of Title 13 in connection with my response to this or any other Census-related questioning will be challenged in a court of law.”

  10. Mike Churchill says:

    In a country worried about racial issues, why is the only thing the census is worried about is what race you are? If you have more mexicans in your town does your town get more money? If you have more blacks does it mean you get more social programs? I don’t understand what race and ethnic origin you are has to do with the census. I thought the purpose was to find out how many PEOPLE are in your community and state. When you fill out a job application this is optional, and when I fill out my census form I will not answer these questions. All I will supply is the names of the people that live in my household. If that is not good enough for them than that’s too bad. I also believe the only people that should be counted are LEGAL residents. If a community has alot of illegals living in it they should not get extra federal money for them. The cities should be encouraged to keep illegals just that, illegal. Maybe that would discourage communities from haboring federal criminals.

  11. djmoloy says:

    I think that it is a fantastic idea to have citizens send reminder emails to their friends and families. Moreover, I think that we should encourage individuals to bring up the census in everyday conversation as well. Word of mouth is a great way to help spread the word on this very critical count. In order to ensure that resources are allocated appropriately, we need to make sure that we have as accurate count as possible. By sending reminder emails and discussing the census with colleagues, we can do our part to make sure that this is the most successful and accurate census ever!

  12. Rita A. Gholson says:

    I totally disagree with Vicki, although I will be filling mine out. The form is too simple. Everyone should look at the census reports that are now available to the public, especially 1870 until 1920. These forms had some very important questions asked, and should be added to the census forms now. As a genealogist, I am very disappointed in how the census bureau is more interested in your race, nationality, etc. I’m proud to be an American, but as usual the government has spent too much money on a piece of garbage. This is our government in action now!!!. I doubt if Thomas Jefferson and James Madison would be happy with the way things are being handled.

  13. Chris Galasso says:

    Why not allow households to voluntarily self-report this information via internet and save some trees, CO2, and MONEY!?!?!

  14. If a person sends back an incomplete census form, the Census Bureau will send an enumerator to his or her household to conduct a personal interview to obtain the information.
    Remember: You save the taxpayer money by returning a completed form. The cost of obtaining a mailed-back census form: $0.42; cost of obtaining a household’s census responses in person if the household doesn’t mail back a completed form: $57.

  15. The U.S. Constitution empowers the Congress to carry out the census in “such manner as they shall by Law direct” (Article I, Section 2). In 1954, Congress codified earlier census acts and all other statutes authorizing the decennial census as Title 13, U.S. Code. Please visit to read more about the census in the Constitution.

  16. Matthew Paul Ramsey says:

    Why does the census form not have something less ambiguous like fiancee for an option of who is living with you. I’m not gay, she is not either so unmarried partner does not work for us. The only real options then are room mate and other non-relative which does not make it seem very accurate.

  17. Bev says:

    It would be very useful to understand why the US Government does not provide multiple medias to complete the census. Anyone conducting research in 2010 knows that you will increase your “hits” by giving a variety of methods for completing th survey, i.e, online. Doing an online option would also decrease the amount of individuals required for data entry. I am annoyed the Census Bureau is not adapated to the technologies available.

  18. Read The Constitution and Title 13 says:

    I believe US Const. Amendment XIX nullifies the gender issue of US Const. Amendment XIV, Section 2.
    The age issue within US Const. Amendment XIV, Section 2 does not state that this should be determined with census data (as is specified specifically elsewhere) rather US Const. Amendment XIV, Section 2 data is derived from voter registration.
    Thus ONLY question #1 is REQUIRED by the Constitution and Title 13.

  19. Read The Constitution and Title 13 says:

    I have read the page you linked to and according to that page there have been court rulings (not up to the Supreme Court, by the way) finding statistical data is valid and fine to be collected by census. However, Full Names, Phone Numbers and any other PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE INFORMATION is not statistical data, it is PERSONALLY IDENTIFIABLE INFORMATION and has no legitimate use in any statistics. This is the RIGHT TO PRIVACY and 4th Amendment problem with the census form.
    Bill Weber (above), provides clear and concise detail about why this data is dangerous to not protect as an individual privacy right!
    Finally, when the Constitution has a statement such as “such manner as they shall by Law direct” (as you quoted), it has been upheld time and again that no law can be at odds with the Constitution (foundational law) and the only mechanism to alter the Constitution or remove limits on the federal government (as enumerated within the Constitution) is by Amendment, not by statute.

  20. Read The Constitution and Title 13 says:

    That sounds almost like extortion, a threat and/or terrorist in nature. I’d say the federal government would save money by not continuing to alienate private citizens and stop promoting the idea that this census is the least intrusive in recent times but is similar to the first census. Well, at the time of the first census we had slavery too, so I guess everything should be held to that standard. Were I around in 1790 and discussing the census with the honorable and great Thomas Jefferson, I would insist to him that the questionnaire not be as extra-Constitutionally intrusive as the 1790 census was. The goal of the census should be to collect the most minimal data as is required. Collecting racial statistics (in a country trying to grow past such division) and personally identifiable information should be viewed as archaic practices and extra-Constitutional (because they are).

  21. j. reese says:

    And how much is this costing US?? Especially the letter informing me my census form will be arriving in one week………hmmm, was that REALLY necessary? My question to the Census Bureau was, “Do I need to send you a letter informing you that we are in economic crisis”?

  22. American says:

    Fight racist politicians! Mark “Other” and write “American” as your race on the Census 2010. Don’t be placated by politicians, and don’t let them treat you like you’re too stupid to earn money, like you’re too “disadvantaged” make your own because of the color of your skin. Fire racists politicians. Ignorance is bliss, isn’t it?

  23. J. Murphy says:

    I am White and found the three choices for Blacks, African American and Negro offensive as well. I do not appreciate seeing the word Negro listed ANYWHERE. How can this be in 2010?? (I am not naive, but was hopeful that the U.S. Government was more “politically correct” than it appears.) Also, Why is White listed first? It’s not alphabetical. Why doesn’t White list three choices?? White, Caucasian or European American? Someone made a huge error in judgment listing race this way.

  24. Ed Kuhn says:

    Just received my Census form in the mail yesterday, March 15. On the cover page it says in bold lettering, PLEASE COMPLETE AND MAIL BACK THE ENCLOSED CENSUS FORM TODAY. Inside the questionier wants to know my household status as of April 1, 2010. I tried to channel Edgar Cayce, the great physic of yesterday, to find out how many people would be living in my house two weeks from now. As of yet I haven’t received a reply. So I’ll probably have to wait until April 1st to get an accurate count.
    And you wonder why people don’t want Government run Health Care?

  25. SR says:

    Essentially I object to using the word “white” to describe a group of people. There is no person alive with that color, other than possibly albinos. There is no social group that is homogeneous enough to conform to that stereotype. There is no human DNA combination reliable linked to skin color. Perhaps chicken breeders have accomplished a DNA strain that is reliably linked to feather color, but human populations are not. Also, there is no such thing as a pure European DNA combination.

  26. tomH says:

    I received my Census questionnaire today and completed it for my household in just a few minutes. It will be returned tomorrow. No complaints or criticism about the process.

  27. Brucifer says:

    Where do I send in my $100.00 fine?

  28. Paul McCormack says:

    Received form. “Please complete and mail back today” (March16). What happens if on April 1, I am “in a nursing home, jail, prison, detention facility” and should not count myself? Should I wait to see that something bad doesn’t happen or send it in now with the potential of being counted twice???
    What to do !!!??

  29. Concerned Person says:

    I want to know why the Feds need this info. How will it be used? I have received another version of this form that asked me for unbelievable questions, including the number of fertile women in my household. I don’t see how or why this is any of Uncle Sam’s business. Is this for a Eugenics program? In fact, isn’t this how the Nazis were able to pin point the exact number of Jews and their names and addresses in 1930s and 1940s Germany? I am very afraid to fill this out – esp. the part about my race and the race of my family members. Why are the Feds interested in this information? What are you planning to do with it?

  30. Talk about confusing says:

    It does also seem to me that only question 1 is required and the rest is optional and as there is no signature (legal declaration), nobody can be held liable for the information put on this form. This all seems completely broken. I would not expect one to have to sign this form, but I also would not expect so much personal info to be asked for and would not expect the law that talks about fines regarding incorrect information to be enforceable without anyone declaring the information provided is accurate by signature (but again, I feel all of that would be moot if we were simply asked for the number of people at a location and that was it).

  31. Inversion says:

    Why does the government need to know the status of my house payment? Seriously.

  32. Samantha says:

    I cracked up when you said you tried to channel Cayce wondering how many people would be living in your household come April 1. I, also, wondered why we were told to mail it back right away, when April 1 was weeks away!

  33. Samantha says:

    I don’t find the term Negro either offensive or racist. But then, I’m probbly older than you. I’m 63 and when I was growing up, races were listed as Caucasion, Negro, Oriental etc. That was in all the dictionaries and encyclopedias. Now days my kids yell at me if i say Oriental; they say I’m supposed to say Asian instead. I know many black people who object to Africsn-American. They don’t know anyone from Africa. Their ancestors came from another country, but not Africa. (like Jamaica).

  34. Jim T. says:

    That is the first thing that struck me: Send it in today, but answer as if it were April 1. My guess is that the folks at the Bureau figure that the potential for losing, or forgetting about, the form two weeks from now is a greater risk. Therefore, they are willing to accept the small discrepancies that will occur because it is filled out ahead of the count date. I think they should have explained that in their mailing. Maybe someone from the Bureau would like to address this.

  35. Mike Farley says:

    Appropriate that you should cite the 1790 directive. That was a Federalist government, and one that was headed — many said deliberately — toward a monarchist type of government. As the Federalist’s arrogance grew more and more obvious to “the middling citizens,” that developing middle class began to develop their own sense of power and organization and soon drove the authoritarian Federalists from power and in fact from existence. The fact that my Census envelope arrived yesterday with the very prominent “YOUR RESPONSE IS REQUIRED BY LAW” shoved in my face is yet another sign that you neo-Federalists have forgotten who works for who in this country. We WILL be letting you know!

  36. This question has been asked by the census since 1890. Homeownership rates serve as an indicator of the nation’s economy. The data are also used to administer housing programs to inform planning decisions. You can read about the history and purpose of each question at

  37. Households should complete and return their forms upon receipt.

  38. SunnySunshine says:

    I agree with other comments the letters announcing the census is not necessary and a total waste of my tax $$. With the current economic crisis that money could be spent much more efficently. The census of a 10 questions mostly about race seems like a real waste of time. Really you are going to call me if you have questions about my answers? What questions could there possibly be about the X in the box answering the question?

  39. Jacques Roman says:

    While I understand that you must identify all races within this great nation on the national census, you refer to what is presumed to be Caucasians as “White.” There is no such entity as a “white” race. You honor people from the Orient as Asian, Chinese, Japanese, etc., or blacks as African Americans or Negro, but you never refer to white Europeans as Caucasians.
    White is not a race. It is a color. We are Caucasians, no necessarily white. Some European Caucasians may be light skinned as the western Europeans and Scandinavians, and some may be outright brown or dark skinned, as those from Mediterranean regions.
    I would urge you to refer to so-called “Whites” as “Caucasians” on your next census form — or, at the very least “Caucasian (White)” adding (White) as a parenthetical addendus for those who may be confused by the word Caucasian.
    May I stress once again that white is not a race. If you distinguish “Black” as African Am., or Negro, then would it not makes more sense to refer to people of European origin as: European Am., or Caucasian, for political correctness?

  40. Rionita says:

    WHITE IS NOT A RACE!!!! Why is on the form? I agree, I am a mixture from Ireland, Scotland, Wales and, as my mother always said, Blue Blooded American. My husband has American Indian blood but the tribe can not be traced, as his indiam ancestor was adopted. The census is to count the people! What happened to the foundation of our country?

  41. Deborah Kinnaman says:

    I received my Census form on March 16. I am being asked to fill out a form today for who lives in my house on April 1. I just don’t understand how anyone can know for sure who’s going to be living anywhere two weeks from now. None of us can predict the future — people die, babies are born prematurely, couples separate, kids move out. Why didn’t you wait until April 1 to mail the form or change the date on the form to March 15? This really, really bothers me–the Census form is an historic record of where a person was living on a certain date; it should be accurate. Conducting the Census is part of our Constitution. Knowingly collecting inaccurate information minimizes the importance of the data, which I think is unfortunate.

  42. kittens says:

    It should be illegal for you to ask my phone number, my name, and my birthdate. If you have further questions, come to my house. It should cost the government, not the taxpayer, $57 to not be able to understand their own directions. (Mark X ….) Even someone who cannot read and write can MARK an X!
    Also, I was an enumerator for six weeks in 1990. I went to mumerous households who stated they had filled out their census and mailed it in a timely manner. So I had to aggree with them when they told me, “How stupid is the government that they lose paperwork that they say is so important ? What a waste of the taxpayers’ money!”

  43. kittens says:

    I totally agree with Paul. Fantasy is what the US Govt. wants us to believe, when it comes to anything to do with government issues. Look how they have jerked our chains for the last 210 years? The US Govt began its corruption just a few years after it was formed!!!
    I photocopied my census in triplicate, so when the enumerator shows up (because they ‘lost’ mine–yeah, right), I can just shove it out the door and tell this person to get lost. I was an enumerator in 1990, I know how this works. I had to agree with those who asked me why they had to have me fill out another questionaire for them. Was the government that irresponsible that they lost their paperwork? I had to agree that it was rediculous. On my questionaire, I was very tempted to write my name in as, “TO RESIDENT AT”, the way they addressed it to me. With all the racial questions, I’m surprised they didn’t ask, “Are you here illegally?” And, if I get phone calls from solicitors, I will know that they sold my phone number!

  44. kittens says:

    To Rita A. Gholson, Please explain in more detail about the questions asked on the census reports, how can I find these, from 1870 to 1920? I am really interested in learning more. I will look you up on Facebook.

  45. kittens says:

    Yeah!!! How stupid is a person (entity) to not understand their own directions, “Mark X in the box”? Oh, yeah, we’re talking about the government.
    And they are going to chase after us by sending someone to our house to make sure we did it right? As a 1990 enumerator (census-taker, paper-chaser)I was asked many times, “Why are you here? I sent in my census!” I just told them the government lost their paperwork and had to do it again–I didn’t know what else to tell them — The government is stupid? When they asked me that, I aggreed with them.
    How many government personnel does it take to change a light bulb? One to state, “The light bulb is out.” One to confirm that the light bulb is indeed out. One to fill out a paper stating the light bulb is out. One to make up a work order that confirms the light bulb is out. One to make up a work order confirming that the light bulb is out. One to confirm the paperwork for the work order confirming that the light bulb is out. One to make up a work order to change the light bulb. One to decide what kind of light bulb to replace the out bulb. One to make up a work order to replace the light bulb with the light bulb decided on. One to deliver the work order to the light bulb crew. One to decide who in the crew will find a replacement bulb. One to go get the replacement bulb. One to relocate the burned out bulb (of course, now they don’t know where it is). One to bring the new bulb to the location of the burned out bulb. Two (here it gets complicated) to bring a ladder to the location of the burned out bulb. One to fill out the paperwork for the ladder. One to decide who will set up the ladder. One to decide who will climb the ladder and replace the bulb. One to climb the ladder, remove the burned out bulb, and put in the new bulb. One to dispose of the old bulb. One to fill out the paperwork that the bulb was disposed of properly. Two to return the ladder to–Where did they get it from? (It takes a couple of hours to go through all the paperwork to find the paperwork on the ladder.) So we have learned that it takes 24 government officials to change a light bulb.
    And we wondered why Clinton’s first presidential haircut cost $200? (Where I live, that haircut would have cost $12.) DOES THE GOVERNMENT SEEK OUT THE MOST EXPENSIVE BUSINESS TO PURCHASE THINGS?

  46. Jones says:

    I agree 100%. My concern is that they mail the form to you and on the outside of the form is says “your response is required by law”. All the census form ask is your name, age, birthdate, race, telephone number. How is this suppose to help the economy and American get out of the recession that is ruining hundreds of thousands of hard working Americans?

  47. not concern abt census says:

    I will not be filling this out the govt does not have any money claiming that this money will be for yur neighborhood which they are cutting jobs still and money cant goe into neighborhoods when people are loosing housing so the govt is lying about this whole thing and the way i feel and i will not open my doors cause im temporarily living in this god forbidden state so i choose not to participate and as far as who should sit in congress im not concern until they get rid of all of them

  48. Latina says:

    OMG! You were thinking the same thing I was thinking, WHITE is not a race!!!!!!! I come from hispanic origins and when Christopher Columbus discovered the islands in the Carribean he brought along the Spaniards and other ethinic groups of people from Europe. I also noticed in the Census they mention Chicano, Chicano is a slang for Mexican American. Black and Negro is another racist way of labeling people. Why was the arab race not mentioned on the form? Is the government being cautious?????? The government thinks people receiving this racist form for the use of government waste will not be noticed by the American People.

  49. butch says:

    Upon opening my census form I had thoughts similar to those posted by others. Why are there questions related to age,gender, race and ethnicity on the form? I believe that the Census Bureau will say that such information is for statistical purposes only, so I ask … why are such statistics needed if nothing will be done with the information? Look at the mailing you received before you received your census form. It says in part “Results from the 2010 Census will be used to help each community get its fair share of government funds…” Does this not tell you that it is clearly the intent of the federal government to use the statistical data to discriminate in some way, either against or in favor of, certain gender or age groups, races, or people of ethnic origin? And I thought that such discrimination in the USA was illegal. I guess that only applies to its citizens, not the federal government.

  50. M. Gilbow says:

    Why is there a distinction between whether a child is a biological or adopted child?

  51. Gilbow,
    Adoption data are collected on Census forms in order to inform the government of the growing diversity of US families and to provide information to better effect government policies related to tax assistance to families with adopted children, programs that encourage adoption or programs that assist families who adopt children.
    Many of those programs and potential legislative actions are shown in the page below on the website of the National Council for Adoption which depends on the Census Bureau as providing the only national and state level information on the number of adopted children and the characteristics of those families who adopt children.

  52. Butch,
    You can read about the history and purpose of each question at

  53. Mel says:

    I didn’t think that we were supposed to fill out the form until April 1. It is arrogant to think that everyone in your home will still be there on that date. God willing we will be–but people die unexpectedly every day. In the interest of accuracy, filling it out April 1 is the prudent thing to do

  54. Mel,
    The Census Bureau is dedicated to meeting our Constitutional mandate of counting every person living in the United States. To meet this mandate, we have learned that people are more likely to mail back their census form if they fill it out and send it in immediately after receipt. April 1, 2010 is simply a reference day.

  55. Jack Richardson says:

    The Census is also used to determine the number of Representatives each state has in Congress. By not asking if each person is a citizen then states that have a high number of illegal aliens will be unfairly given more representation in Congress and will be beholden to the illegals for their extra seats.

  56. Jack,
    As mandated in the Constitution, the decennial Census must count each person living in this country. The census is used to determine the number of Representatives each state has, but it also used in the annual distribution of $400 billion federal funds that affect all people living in the United States.

  57. William J. Sermons, Jr. says:

    Why do you ask for the number of people living in my house on April 10, yet send me a reminder to complete my census form on March 22? Isn’t that really a duplication of effort and a waste for taxpayers? I don’t know what may happen in the next week. My wife may toss me out. I could die. One of my kids may boomerang. The real question is why are you trying to collect the data before the data can by correctly filled out? You are nagging.

  58. Bob G says:

    The Census form asks for answers as of “April 1, 2010”. It came with a cover letter dated March 15, 2010 requesting “Please complete and mail back the enclosed census form today.”
    Well, I happen to believe there are people who are within days of dying in these United States and filling out the census form in advance of April 1st either is asking for someone to guess that a person is going to be dead (or thru devine intervention is still alive after declaring that person dead.) The only correct way to fill out the form is to fill it out ON April 1, 2010. To do anything else would be similar to registering the names on gravesites as current voters…oh, wait…that happens anyway.

  59. Wanda says:

    I am shocked at the number of paranoid people out there. If you have not committed a crime and you are a citizen – WHAT are you afraid of?

  60. Jeff says:

    I could care less if it cost a $1000 dollars to send somebody to my house! What I filled out on the form is all your going to get! Period!

  61. Jeff says:

    Why don’t you just cut the BS Kev! You and I know that you are not going to fine anybody for not filling out the form completely! I didn’t.

  62. Jeff says:

    Hey Bri! Are you stupid enough to think that the people in Washington actually represent us? They represent themselves! They care about their agenda and pet projects. They could care less about the American people.

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