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The War Over War 

Editor:

Measures F (Arcata) and J (Eureka) and bad. Bad for young adults, bad for our communities, and bad for our nation. The proponents of the “Child Protection Act” just don’t know what they are talking about. Some claim recruiters want to send our children to war. How ridiculous can you get. I can’t imagine anyone wanting to send children to war. Though I suspect many would want to train them so they can survive and so our country can also survive.

They talk about the potential death, dismemberment and traumatic stress. Sounds horrible, but I wonder -- have proponents ever checked the statistics on cause of death, especially in the age group they talk about? Moms and pops, your children in their ages of concern are a whole lot safer in the military -- even in today’s combat zones -- than being home driving a car. Perhaps we can pass a law prohibiting people from living, working or visiting Washington D.C., Chicago and many other places where the murder rate is higher than all deaths in the military, including non-combat zones. I suspect that more Google searches would show that there are more deaths and injuries per capita, in private industry, police and fire than in the military, in spite of OSHA’s best efforts.

Then there’s the cost of these measures, as surely colleges and universities, private industry, law enforcement, fire departments all get banned from career day. Can’t discriminate, you know, and if the measures should pass they will be challenged. And don’t forget the loss of funds to schools from the “No Child Left Behind Act” and the ROTC program, and any other programs that receive federal funds.

Remember, without the U.S. Military there would be no United States of America. Home of the free because of the brave. Vote No on Measures F (Arcata) and J (Eureka).

— Howard Rien, Eureka

 

Editor:

We, the Board of Directors of the Redwood Peace and Justice Center, believe that limiting recruiter contact with youth is beneficial for the community. Passing Measures F and J would mean that teenagers would be less likely to be unwittingly subjected to recruiters, who are trained to think of teens as commodities rather than as human beings.

Members of our board have seen recruiters bringing pizza for the students onto junior high school campuses, presumably to start the process of creating positive associations with enlistment. This is the normal course of events and it is appropriate for the many people working on this measure to bring it our attention and seek to change the way the community views military solicitation of our youth. We are not alone in our views. The Youth Protection Act is supported by Veterans for Peace, Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, The Humboldt Green Party and the hundreds of citizens who have already signed the petition to get this measure on the ballot.

We urge registered voters in Eureka to vote “Yes” on measure J and those in Arcata to vote “Yes” on measure F. If you or someone you know is concerned about military service, leave a message at 707-444-8270 and we will put you in touch with the Humboldt Committee for Conscientious Objectors/GI Rights Hotline.

*— Ross Mackinney,
Director, Redwood Peace & Justice Center*

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