We’re not sure how an anti-tax group based in Chicago has the standing to sue Riverside-Brookfield High School District 208, but on Friday we’re going to find out, apparently.

It’ll be great publicity for Taxpayers United of America – formerly National Taxpayers United of Illinois, founded in 1976 by James Tobin – which since has opposed every single tax referendum and increase that comes down the pike.

What it’s going to do for the residents of District 208, we can’t say. Not much, is our guess.

First, the residents of the district didn’t need Taxpayers United of America to defeat a referendum put forth by the district. It was widely and soundly defeated by a 3-to-1 margin.

Second, what on earth does the group propose to accomplish with a lawsuit for what it has determined was electioneering by the district? Apart from forcing the district to use taxpayer dollars to fend off this frivolous action, it will get them exactly what Tobin has always wanted – lots of notoriety.

Because, let’s be frank, Tobin doesn’t care about District 208 or Riverside or Brookfield. He cares only about waging his anti-tax crusade in the face of everything and anywhere it can get him the most publicity.

Had Oak Park not been part of this equation, we doubt he would’ve bothered with such small potatoes as Riverside and RBHS. RB was an add-on because it shared referendum language with Oak Park. Where was he when school districts 94, 95, 96,103, the Brookfield Public Library and, yes, RBHS, all campaigned for and passed their referendums from 2004 to 2006? Mowing greener pastures.

The fact is, taxes are necessary and result in good. Taxes make it possible for us to be safe in our homes, to drink clean water and breathe clean air. They are necessary to operate schools to educate this nation’s children and pay for health care for the elderly and needy.

Those are not extras. Those are an essential part of the common good.

Can we differ on how those taxes are collected, how much should be collected and how that amount should be figured? Absolutely. But be wary of those who are against all tax hikes and all taxes. The me-first attitude of many anti-tax zealots is, to us, not a recipe for a healthy democracy but for a winner-take-all, grasping society of people who are driven by suspicion, division and fear.

So before anyone locally buys the line that Taxpayers United of America is doing some great service to the community by filing their lawsuit against the high school district, just ask yourself, “Who is really benefiting here?”