I’m Disappointed in America: The 2010 Census

Today is the deadline for returning your 2010 Census, you know the paper that came in the mail and asked you a bunch of questions, but you stopped because you thought it was too much work for nothing. Don't worry, you're not alone, only 49% of New Jersey residents have returned the form. Sounds like a good number until I tell you that the major cities (read: neediest of cites) like, Newark, Elizabeth, Camden, Paterson and Trenton have returned somewhere between 25% - 33% of their census forms.

Not surprising that these are the same places that failed to get out to vote in a Gubernatorial election that may cost the state nearly a billion dollars in education aid. Earlier this year there was much to do over the term "Negro" still being on the form and there's been a media campaign that's ranged from the Super Bowl to Facebook to commercial break of your favorite reality show, so the awareness factor is there, but so is the ignorance factor.

"It don't mean nothing!" "Why they gotta know how many people live here?" "It's a trick by INS!"

These are some of the things people are saying in response to why they aren't completing the forms. But they're wrong…as usual. It does mean something; it could mean the amount of aid your city/town/county/state receives, the number of congressional seats, which contributes to the Electoral College, which as we learned in the 2000 election can steal the presidency. So, it means a little more than 5 – 10 minutes it'll take to complete the form. And trust me, if the government wanted really get rid of illegal immigrants, this wouldn't be the way they would do it.

If you live alone, you have no excuse, I completed mine by the time I popped a bag of Jiffy Pop popcorn and poured a glass of lemonade. The state of New Jersey is prepared to combat the lack of response and has hired nearly 20,000 workers (at up to $17.00 an hour) to knock on the doors of those whose forms have gone unanswered. So when you get a knock at your door, it won't be because the neighbors know your name or someone telling you about Jehovah's Kingdom, it's gonna be some college kid they sent to get answers, because you were too damn lazy to write a name or two and check a few boxes!

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