Friday, March 18, 2005
Kathryn Hedges (P)responds To GuvWurld Comments on War Resisters Resolution
> To the City Council:
> Although I agree that the war in Iraq is morally unsound and there are
> grounds for considering it illegal, I do not believe that Dave
> Meserve's City Resolution is a productive action.
> Such a Resolution should only be adopted if there is consensus in the
> community. We did not have consensus at the City Council meeting, and
> I doubt the Town Hall meeting tonight will convert the non-believers.
> Consider the unintended consequences of the Resolution: this is a slap
> in the face to those who served in the armed forces, and to those who
> disagree with Dave Meserve's view on the war. If we want our minority
> opinion to be heard in Washington, it is hypocritical to ignore our
> community members who disagree with the opinion of the week. We have
> enough polarizing issues in the community, such as the homeless
> situation, logging, and Town vs. Gown, without inventing one.
> I am also dismayed that consideration of this Resolution has postponed
> debate on a matter that stands a better chance of gaining consensus:
> the No Confidence Resolution. Although I, and most people I've spoken
> with, agree the local elections are operated fairly and legally,
> nobody is satisfied with the national situation. Electronic
> touch-screen voting is a very cost-ineffective way to count votes--it
> isn't even particularly accurate. Unfair allocation of equipment has
> become a means to discriminate against minority voters in some areas
> of the country. I was concerned when I heard that Humboldt County is
> considering adoption of the infamous Diebold touch-screen ballot
> machines, which makes the No Confidence issue time-sensitive. We need
> to be sure that our votes count the way we cast them, even if we don't
> need to worry about discrimination at the polls. Consider that if the
> 2000 election had been completely fair and aboveboard, George W. Bush
> may not have become President, thus preventing the Iraq War. It also
> makes more sense for a City government to be concerned with the
> workings of democracy than of military or foreign policy.
> Although the City Council certainly spends more of its time taking
> care of normal community business than it does on Resolutions, these
> national issues tend to occupy a disproportionate amount of people's
> energy and attention. We need to consider carefully what causes we
> support in this manner, lest we trivialize our City Resolutions into
> the "issue of the week," diluting any effect on our national audience.
> Thank you for reading my opinion on this matter.
> Kathryn Hedges