Invest funds in our peace, not war

November 10, 2011

We, the undersigned Davis peace community groups, support all those, young and old, who Occupy Wall Street and cry out “We are the 99%” in asking for economic justice, including ending unemployment, providing living wages and having access to affordable education and health care and housing for all.

We hereby add our voice to this movement by asking for a reduction of military spending. This exceeds more than $1 trillion so far for our present wars, while billions more are spent to develop and deploy new weapons of destruction for our future wars.

These monies could bring us food for the hungry, housing for the homeless, health care for all, and the jobs of building new roads and bridges to preserve our own country. What they do bring is death and destruction wherever they are used, making the world less safe for all.

Our soldiers, if they survive, come home with serious mental and physical injuries to a country that is unable or unwilling to properly treat them or provide for their future.

According to the 25 Teachers Salaries Campaign, each $1 million bomb costs the equivalent of 25 teachers’ salaries in California, where the average teacher’s salary is $40,000. The National Priorities Project notes that for the $64.5 billion that California taxpayers will pay for the proposed Department of Defense program for 2012, we could provide, for example, 738,013 firefighters, 7.3 million Head Start slots for children, or Pell grants of $5,550 for a year for 11.6 million students. (http://nationalpriorities.org/en/tools/tradeoffs/)

Let us move toward economic justice with Occupy Wall Street by moving away from a war-based economy to a peace economy.

Claude Garrod, Davis Peace Coalition

Karen Hudson-Bates, Church and Society of the Davis United Methodist Church

Will Lotter, Davis Religious Community for Sanctuary

Jewel Payne, Church and Society Ministry of Davis Community Church

Lyla Rayyan, Students for Justice in Palestine

Trudi Richards, Davis Community for Peace and Wellbeing

Kristin Stoneking, Cal Aggie Christian Association

Guy Turner, St. James Catholic Church Gospel Justice Group

Natalie Wormeli, Sacramento/Yolo Code Pink