Ahh, the Amish. That peculiar unfamiliar American religious sect perceived by most as as simple folk enjoying a fancy-free lifestyle that predates the industrial revolution.
They're a group of Christian followers that enforce strict religious doctrine topped off with a small amount of Luddite craziness. Locally they're known for shunning technology, awful bowl-cut hair styles, birthing offspring on the hour, tireless agriculture and taking bi-annual showers.
Believing in literal interpretations of Biblical texts and possessing a desire to shy away from contemporary society, the Amish exist in a prosaic farming world all to themselves.
Their existence is rather similar to M. Knight Shyalaman's rather poor movie "The Village" - but without the unnecessary "it was all set in modern times" twist. The truth is the Amish are completely aware of current society and indeed as will be shown they sometimes take part in it. Yet many facets of their lives are a mystery to the general population and are often misunderstood.
So let's raise a barn, churn some butter and party like it's 1899 (thanks Weird Al) as it's time to dispel sixteen commonly held yet inaccurate Amish myths.
16. Myth - The Amish Don't Pay Taxes
Two things are certain in life - death and taxes and whilst the former will hit us all, the latter may only applicable to some.
Yet contrary to popular belief, Amish folk are not tax exempt on either a local or state level. They pay sales tax, income tax, federal, business and property taxes just like every other American Joe. That's VAT, inland revenue, poll tax, rates and more to us Brits.
Many Americans believe and indeed are sometimes very resentful that the Amish folk get off lightly regarding paying their dues when in reality they do not. This misconception probably stems from their lack of contribution to the United States Social Security fund which provides unemployment benefits, pensions and health care. However, they also do not collect such welfare, relying instead on their own financial collective to help fellow brethren out during hard times.
One of the biggest complaints levied against the Amish religion and its followers is this full on completely tax-free myth status and it's one that they simply do not have.